Sooner or later everyone has to deal with health care as a patient, carer or health professional. In all these qualities one faces one’s own limitations and those of others. One experiences also the dependence on technology and the complexity of the care system. Panton aims at handing people tools to overcome the impediments caused by their own or other people’s failing health. Our team of designers tries to achieve this goal by developing products and services that contribute to a better health, or help to remain healthy.

Strategic design

Innovations in health care are the more successful if they are based on vision and strategic aims of the organisation. We assist care organisations and enterprises to formulate their vision and to define their aims at a strategic level. We are able to translate these into products and services which are valuable for patients, carers and organisations.

Innovations in health care are the more successful if developed from the needs of patients and carers. In order to guarantee this we cooperate closely with care professionals and patients in all our innovation projects.

Areas of Knowledge

Over the past few years cooperation with care professionals, patients and experts taught us a great deal about care processes, needs and experiences of those involved in care, user-focused design and patient safety. However, at Panton we want to keep learning and discovering. For that reason we invest in knowledge development in our field and in our network of care professionals. In the near future our specific areas of knowledge are:

Behaviour change

In cooperation with the behavioral and communication consultants of Tabula Rasa we develop the Beter gezond (Whole and Healthy) app for the Radboudumc. The Beter Gezond app helps people to reduce the risk of cancer by keeping a healthier lifestyle.

We need to have knowledge of behavioral sciences in order to be able to make the right analyses and choices for a strategy which leads to behavioral change. Therefore we work together with behavioral scientists in various projects. Wth them we develop instruments to translate knowledge into practice.

Samen met de gedrag- en communicatieconsultants van Tabula Rasa ontwikkelen we de Beter Gezond app voor het Radboudumc. De Beter Gezond app helpt mensen met een gezondere leefstijl om de kans op kanker te verlagen.

Panton is also one of the partners of the Nederlands Platform voor gedragsontwerp (Dutch Platform for Behavioral Design). In this platform behavioral scientists and a number of creative studios combine their knowledge to use design to achieve behavioral change. They do this in several projects of health care.


In 2011 The British Medical Journal published an article by a team of doctors and researchers led by Machteld Huber. In this article the concept of health was redefined: “Health is the quality to adapt and direct one’s own life, taking into account its social, mental and physical challenges.”* These words express our deepest motivation for what we do. Our greatest reward is to enable people – when they face great challenges in their life – to adapt themselves and to keep in command.

From experience gained from many projects we know that these challenges can occur in any stage of life, both in patients and in carers. Patients may be confronted with the challenges of their illness, or limitations, care professionals may struggle with too much workload, taking the right decisions and dealing with frustration when they are not successful in curing their patients. In our opinion design can help looking for ways to increase the power and autonomy of people.

A generic solution is impossible. As Huber writes: “One cannot expect all people ‘to be able to adapt themselves and to be in command’, at least not without the right monitoring and support”.

Together with patients, doctor and researchers we explore the scope of empowerment in the sense of adaptation and autonomy. We research how design can contribute.

* Huber et al. 2011 ‘How should we define health?’, BMJ, 2011 volume 343 pp d4163

Multidisciplinary trans- and intramural cooperation

We are increasingly asked to effectively streamline the way towards the desired result in cooperation with users. Especially if the desired result depends largely on the cooperation of people from different departments or organisations. Designers, for that matter, are trained to work in multidisciplinary teams.

Typical qualities of designers are: curiosity, optimism, analytical power, goal-orientedness, empathy and creativeness. We also have the skill of visualising ideas quickly and test these in an early stage. These very qualities turn out to have added value in multidisciplinary teams in which complex problems have to be dealt with. The more so when the care professionals or patients are short of time. We use these qualities more and more to tackle complex problems on customer experience, logistics, social cohesion, safety and efficiency. We learn a great deal re this from a.o. our growing network of directors, managers, architects, patient safety officers, non-profit organisations and patient associations.

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