Lee is a programmer working in Silicon Valley. He came to USA from China when he was 18 and completed his Computer Science study when he was 24. Now he has worked as a programmer for 5 years.
His parents are still in China. They are both more than 60 years old. Their health status began to be worse. After their annual body checking, they found that they have to take medicine for hypertension, high blood sugar, Alzheimer’s Preventing and osteoporosis. There are too many types of pills so that they always forget to take medicine. Lee is worried about his parents. He’s not able to go back to China and take care of his parents because of his busy work.
What’s the Problem?
Lee’s parents have both retired 2 years ago and start enjoying their retiring life. However they easily forget to take the medication from doctors. Especially when most of their health problems are chronic diseases that won’t have symptoms immediately. Lee is quite worried about his parents but apparently, due to the time zone difference, he could barely sending some text to his parents to remind them.
What’s Current Solution?
Among the survey, most of students we surveyed would text their parents daily to check if they have taken medication or not. Some of them will call the parents directly to check.However all of those current solutions are tends to be not efficient because of the time difference.
From Problem to Concept
The application is aiming at reminding patients to have medication on time. The stakeholders includes patient, caregiver, doctors and pharmacists. They will meet with different problems remain to be solved in the medication process including how to deal with the medication plan, how to remind the patient and how to give feedback to the doctors.
From Concept to Low-Fidelity Prototype (Wireframe)
Low fidelity prototype is designed to illustrate basic functions of the application. Those functions are listed as follow.
a. Send reminder to the application user (care giver/doctor) to inform them if the b. patient has taken the pill
c. Check current medication plan
d. Check instructions from the doctor about certain type of medication
e. Set the default time such as “breakfast time” and “sleeping time”
f. Directly communicate with doctors for consulting and question answering.
g. Check patients’ medication history and his actual process of the medication plan.
1.User connect the device to his mobile phone.
2.Once the device detected the patient didn’t take the medicine, user can call/message the patient.
3.Once the device detected the patient has finished medication, user will receive a message.
4.If patient and user has any problem with the medication, they can contact doctor directly.
5.User can track the overall medication plan.
6.Even the user is not at his phone, it can send reminder automatically.
From Low-Fidelity to Mid-Fidelity Prototype
Mid-Fidelity Prototype contains basic visual elements of the app but still considered as a “draft”. The mid-fidelity prototype is responsible for testing basic interaction, usage flow , interface layout and visual cues. This mid-fidelity prototype only contains caregiver’s terminal. Once feed back is collected, high fidelity prototype would include more detail as well as app for doctors and app for patients themselves.
① Remind user that the patient hasn’t taken medicine
② User has different ways of to remind patient to take the pill
③ A phone call based on internet will be made to the patient
④ Once the device detected patient has taken the pill, it will give feedback to user
⑤ The front page includes Today’s medication plan and its complete status
⑥ By typing the menu button on the left top screen, the menu will swipe from left
⑦ Care givers and doctors are able to check patients’ medication history by date or either by chart
⑧Directly chat with the doctor, ask them for instruction and report other issues
⑨ Detailed description of a certain medicine and instruction from doctors
⑩Patients and caregivers can check medicine plan and their complete status here.
⑪ Caregivers can connect the account to a certain medication device by typing in series number.
5 users were involved in the user test. 4 of them are students in Georgia Tech. 1 of them typically matches the persona of care giver. The test was conducted during weekday afternoons and each of them last for around 10 minutes. Variables recorded in the user test includes time consuming on figuring out what to do about the app and how many times they misunderstand the app. A short interview was conducted after they finish the test to collect more detailed opinions from users.
The typical user involved in the test was Jasmine Shi, who is who is 38-yr-old and she works as an accountant. Her work is quite busy especially it’s close to the tax day recently. She has to work for more than 10 hours a day staring at the screen, sitting in front of the laptop. She leaves home at 8 everyday and comes back home at about 9 p.m.
Her parents are both over 65. They live in China. Jasmine is worried about their health status because she hasn’t go back to China to see them for about five years.
User Test Feedback
The criteria of mid-fidelity user test is that if users are not able to gain information in five seconds, that means there’s usability issue on the page users were looking at. Problem severity is evaluated based on the total time users used to navigate the page.
From Mid-Fidelity To High-Fidelity Prototype
The color palette was determined according to the color emotion theory .
#57C9DC Blue Green : Steady & Safety
#FF7B7B Coral Red : Passion & Warm
Logo is built on 60*60 IOS app logo art board. A basic “M” shape and exclamation mark represents “remind” is included.
When the app user is a patient?
Patients are considered as a group of typical users of the app. The major function for the app to patients is reminding. Other tasks including medication progress checking, contact caregiver and doctors, history recording will also be involved. Patients are not able to change prescription medicine plan themselves.
Based on the existed visual guide, interface wireframe and app tasks list, the high fidelity prototype was developed in sketch. Having opinions from former user test, it is proved that users’ feedback, especially direct interview are quite useful.
The same user test subject was invited again to do the test (Thank you Jasmine!)
Most of feedback this time is focused on visual elements. Especially the interface’s color palette was consisted of shallow and bright colors, the first version of interface is almost hard to see under exterior light. After getting this feedback, important information (missing medication / contact request, etc) would be emphasized by having bright red background.
Med Minder For Patient
When the app user is a caregiver?
Caregivers are the initial and core user groups of the app – The initial idea is for overseas kids to help their parents about medication. The main functions are similar as patients’ need but will be more focusing on manipulating / supervise and reminding. Another important task is contacting with doctors about medication. For patients of user group that are over 50, they are less likely to use app. The reminder of their medication would be rely on their kids.
Caregivers’ end user test was conducted after the patients’ one . Therefore the feedbacks was less. The most significant feedback from this test was that unlike what we used to place buttons on desktop interfaces – “yes” at left and “no” at right, on the phones, especially phones with large screens as iPhone Plus series, users are more likely to use one hand to interact with screen so usually the “yes” button was placed on right. After this test, all buttons’ placement was refined
Med Minder for Caregiver
When the app user is a doctor?
Doctor is the minor user group of the app. The main function for doctors are not reminding patients but randomly checking patients’ medication progress, assign and revise their medication plan and expose the doctors themselves to more potential clients. Another task for the app is to build a platform for patients and doctors to communicate online which makes long distance medication consult available.
The project provided a comprehensive opportunity for me to dig UX design process. Thanks to the project schedule, i could do some usability test. The next potential step for this project should be organizing another usability test after modifications to see if the new design system works better or not. A/B testing is prefered if time permitted.