There is no doubt that we are in the midst of a global healthcare crisis. In America alone, 25% of the population has two or more chronic conditions, which is predicted to increase by 38% by 2020. Chronic conditions, such as arthritis, diabetes and lupus often result in a lifetime of medication, pain management and care.

Over the past 2 years we have spoken to a lot of people who are living their lives with a chronic condition. What we have discovered is that the first six months after diagnosis is a critical timeframe. How people act during these first 6 months can dramatically affect their relationship with their illness for the rest of their lives.

Where are the opportunities for design to help support chronic care patients?

Smart Design's Heather Martin recently wrote an article addressing this question. She suggests that design has an important role to play in the co-creation of new devices, services and systems that support people emotionally during the first 6 months.

We invite you to read the article on our Smart Thinking website ( and join the conversation.

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