When Deljit Bains stepped into her new role to lead the South Asian Health Institute in British Columbia, she knew she had a big challenge ahead of her - trying to find ways to improve health outcomes for the huge South Asian population there, which had really high rates of chronic disease.
A nice neat plan had already been developed for her, where she was supposed to find volunteers to go into the community to do things like educate people, give flu shots and run exercise programs.
But when she started to put the plan into action, she realized quickly that it wasn't going to work. It had been designed for a predominantly white, educated, English-speaking health care system that operated from 9 to 5 on weekdays – not a culturally rich, Punjabi-speaking, population with often low literacy rates that gathered in the evening and on weekends.
If she was going to have any impact at all, she'd have to let go of old-school approaches to health promotion and adopt an innovation mindset. And that's how the Apnee Sehat Design Lab for South Asian Health started.
In this episode, Deljit shares her biggest insights about leading change in an incredibly complex situation and tells us how she found a new way forward using human-centred design.
You can find much more detail about the project in the evaluation report. Or watch the video summary of the project.
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