Finally I’ve had the opportunity to head over to Google Campus for an event! Definitely didn’t look like campus showing in Interns, but it was able to accommodate about 150 eager listeners to the events speakers.
The topic for the evening, as the title would suggest, was designing products for health. This, however, really meant optimising the UX of healthcare related products, be them for patients, clinicians or anyone for that matter.
Our first speaker was Katie McCurdy, UX designer and researcher focusing on healthcare. She explained that her own health problems over the years were a strong motivator for her to put her UX skills to good us, where she produced her own health timeline to inform new doctors of her medical history. She documented whenever she had flare ups of her symptoms, and giving additional information such as her mood, and triggers during these episodes to help identify trends and patterns. Not everyone would have the patience or discipline to do this, and Katie explained that if you want to take more control of her health and inform your doctor of your condition(s) progress, as them first what information they would benefit from you documenting. There is no point putting in so much effort to record information that won’t be of any use.
Lenny Naar was up next. He is a Design Strategist at HELIX Centre and Co-founder Prescribe Design. Since he works in a healthcare environment, he gets to quickly learn of and address issues in a hospital setting. We certainly need more arrangements like this where we have designers uniquely placed to quickly deal with healthcare issues proactively, rather than reactively. One the projects his team has been working on is Floot, which makes measuring respiratory effort in asthmatic children fun and most importantly a regular activity in order to improve their health outcomes. I’ll be paying the HELIX Centre a visit real soon, since I was very impressed with their mind-set let alone their output.
The third speaker was FJ Van Wingerde, Head of UX at TrialReach. He gave a delightful presentation on designing for everyone which is virtually impossible. He explained how so many tools in the UX toolbox are rendered useless, with the best example being personas. A persona is a fictional person who is meant to represent a group, but if the group is everyone, then it is impossible to have a single representation. Very thought provoking for everyone in the room since good Healthcare should be for everyone after all.
Our final speaker was Gianluca Trombetta, Product Manager and Founder of Hearing Hacks. His presentation was about his organisation which provides a community for hearing aid users, like Gianluca, so they can inform in each other issues relating to the use of hearing aids which healthcare professionals don’t. Such a community should eventually have a great opportunity to influence and improve the quality of products designed for those with hearing impairment.
A pleasant evening to learning and networking with likeminded individuals in the wonderful world of Healthcare UX.