Providing motivations for chronic disease patients to build and follow a long term healthcare plan
1 month (2018)
Areas of responsibility
Desk research & interviews, System analysis, Design strategy, UI design, Prototyping
I worked as part of an interdisciplinary team for this project to create an integrated solution that is about human behaviour and social innovation. Our client, CERN wanted us to explore some of the technologies from them or beyond, that might enable us to create a compelling new solution. My team kicked off the project with health and wellbeing as a topic. We looked at the changing model of delivery for healthcare, enabled by big data, AI and machine learning.
HiMirror is a smart mirror which can motivate chronic disease patients to build a healthy lifestyle by monitoring their health condition every day with interactive visualization. It is convenient to use a mirror to check the health condition since looking at a mirror is part of people's daily routine. It is also relatable and realistic to see how your body functions with a full-sized mirror.
Since health and wellbeing is a very broad topic, we tried to find a specific area to work on by sharing our interest and knowledge about the topic. A lot of us mentioned stories of how their parents or grandparents are suffering from chronic diseases. We decided to do research and interview chronic disease patients to see how we could help them with design. From the interviews, we discovered the needs and wants of chronic disease patients and challenges for patients to fight the diseases. We also talked to doctors to understand the opportunities and how the design should connect with the healthcare services that the patients are using.
1. 50% of chronic disease patients fail to participate in treatments according to prescription which costs a lot of burden on the NHS system.
2. Patients are not aware of the seriousness and have enough knowledge about their disease.
3. Motivations for patients to follow the prescriptions are physically getting better and getting support from family and friends.
4. Monitoring symptoms and keeping journals to track the disease can effectively help prevent worsening of the disease.
How might we motivate chronic disease patients to have a healthy lifestyle through monitoring their daily health condition with a smart mirror?
HiMirror is a smart mirror that provides motivations for chronic disease patients to build a healthy lifestyle by an interactive visualization of their health condition.
It helps patients see the estimated consequences that might be aroused by their disease in the future, provides motivations and suggestions on how to build a healthy lifestyle, provides support from family and friends and lets patients see the positive changes of the health condition from time to time. In the long run, doctors will have higher efficiency at work and hospitals will be able to alleviate the use of resources in nonadherence.
How does it work?
The mirror can be linked to patients' smart devices and wearables to gather their health data. It contains an optical heart rate, a blood pressure sensor and a body composition scale. Data of the health condition will be analyzed and displayed on the screen behind the mirror. It is also equipped with a camera, an IR camera and an IR LED, together they become a motion sensor. It recognizes the position and gesture of the patient.
We validated our idea with a few chronic disease patients and we got positive comments on the creativity of checking health condition with a mirror. They thought it would be very helpful to understand more about their disease and what they should do in order to develop a healthy lifestyle. We also discussed our idea with a physician in the hospital, who is an expert in handling hypertension patients. He saw the potential of the smart mirror to be installed not only at home, but hospitals and healthcare centres which could motivate patients to take action, improve the efficiency of doctors at work and patients’ treatment rate.
Working in an interdisciplinary team
I worked with 4 designers and 2 engineers from different design backgrounds in this project. We all have very different design thinking mindset and work practice. It was challenging to align the way of working at the beginning but we managed to coordinate well with some discussions of how we should work together and leverage our skills and knowledge as a team. We ended up really enjoying the design process and believe an interdisciplinary team can actually enhance the dynamics of a project and boost innovation.
The power of service x product design
Because of the diversity of the team, we did not limit ourselves to create a solution that only fell into one design field. We first focused on the outcome we wanted to achieve and thought of using a mobile application for the execution of the idea. However, we realized that there were several applications already providing similar experiences. We then tried to brainstorm other ways to implement our idea. We finally came up with a smart mirror which is obviously an upgrade of the execution of the idea.