2016 - Amsterdam, NL
Re designing a non-invasive anaemia detection device for rural India. The device should fit the needs of different users involved with mother and child care, while remaining at low-cost.
My role: Design Research & UX Design - at TU Delft
CHALLENGE & RESULT
Anaemia has high incidence for women in rural India, specially during pregnancy and resulting in high mortality rates during child birth. Biosense's low cost technology enables anaemia screening without pricking the patient’s skin, providing an affordable, non-invasive device.
To bringtheir technology to market, Biosenses wanted to design the device to meet expectations from India's healthcare providers as well as patient needs.
As a result, the new ToucHb fits the indian context due to its affordability, portability and by supporting care-givers of different education levels. Additionally, it's interface is user friendly and it equipts nurses with tools to better communicate with patients.
To understand the Indian health system and user groups, we spent several weeks in rural areas conducting interviews and generative sessions with various health care providers like 24h trained "nurses" (ASHAS) - who are the main contact point with patients, medical specialists of private/public clinics and NGO doctors who serving across the country.
On the other hand, we interview medical device vendors to understand the market and how communication around anaemia and blood diseases is most efficient in India. Finnally, we facilitated a vision session with Biosense to understand business drivers and potential limitations.
KEY RESEARCH FINDINGS:
Design to suit all levels of medical care: There is an immense education gap amongst healthcare staff from 24h trained ASHA nurses to specialist doctors, which means the device needs to suit a wide range of medical expertise.
Bring the device to people's homes: Patients in rural areas struggle to get to the health centres due to lack of transportation or income; thus, ASHA nurses – who focus on rural areas – are a key target and portability is a priority.
Opportunity to prevent anaemia: though easily treatable and somehow preventable, anaemia is often unknown and misunderstood by patients; thus, the device must empower nurses to inform patients about prevention.
Every design iteration was tested with users: from the shape for the plastic shell to the interface flows or testing the symbols to be used on the buttons.
The re-designed device combines a low-cost shell with a more complex graphical interface for visual guidance, which can be used by care givers of all education levels. The product is portable and transported in a carrying case ans an infographic to explain patients about anaemia.
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