A medical platform helps non-COVID patients who faced difficulties in getting treatment during the pandemic.
Online Group Project
Storyboard, User Research
March 2020 - May 2020
The project works not simply within the application.
Instead, it will coordinate with the neighborhood the patient lives in to help provide more available and safe medical treatment, alleviating the pressure of hospitals meanwhile decreasing patients’ risk of getting infected in the process.
At the beginning of 2020, an illness, later called “Coronavirus” (COVID-19), broke out in Wuhan, China, and spread rapidly to the whole country and then the world.
At that time, many hospitals and medical centers became designated hospitals, specializing in the treatment of COVID-19 patients and suspected patients. Doctors also went to the frontline to participate in the treatment and cure.
In such a period, the medical resources were largely distributed to deal with COVID-19. However, how to get medical treatment for non-COVID patients and residents with other medical needs has become a major problem.
We chose to observe people via the largest Chinese social media “Weibo”, which is similar to twitter in their functions.
After browsing the media and ordinary people's records on Weibo, we found that there are a large number of people with other medical needs, including many severely ill patients. In the case of uneven distribution of medical resources, severely ill patients delay treatment, and even face life-threatening conditions; ordinary patients can only choose to take a huge risk to go to the hospital or delay the time for treatment.
A total of 21 interviewees from 13 different places were selected for the interview.
We asked them about their thoughts and experience of getting medical treatment during the pandemic.
"I got a fever weeks ago but I cannot make sure whether I infected the coronavirus, and I was afraid of either going to the hospital or contacting the manager of the neighborhood. And I know there is a pregnant woman who missed her scan because of the virus."
"The difficulty was the inconvenience of traffic. During the shutdown of the city, vehicles were banned. Fear of cross-infection at the hospital was also a thing. "
After the interviews, we found out the following 3 user pain points:
Non-COVID patients face difficulties in getting medical treatment: no transportation, no medical staff, and uneven medical resources.
COVID-19 patients are not able to get an available bed in the hospital and have to wait for a very long time.
Normal citizens do not know how to check whether they are infected and are not willing to go to the hospital because of the fear of cross-infection.
After group discussion, we think that comparing to other people, normal citizens don’t have extremely urgent needs. Meanwhile, a majority of the problems which COVID patients are facing can only be solved by the government. Therefore, we decided to design a project that can help with the problems of those non-COIVD patients who were in Wuhan and still had medical needs.
A total of 161 answers were submitted.
From their responses, we found support and supplement to the pain points we got from the user interview.
For the majority, the biggest problems they faced when going to the hospital are:
They don’t know where the COVID patients had been to and are afraid of being infected.
They don’t know clearly about the situation in the hospital: The list of designated hospitals & The hospitals they can go
The process of going to the hospital is complicated: Longer waiting time & Higher risk of infection
After the user interview, based on the urgency of the pain point and the possibility of solving it within the capability of the team, we set the pain point range to the problems faced by non-COVID patients who need medical treatment. The big data survey shows that the information about medical treatment that the residents know is still not enough. And mostly mentioned in the questionnaire are a long waiting time for medical treatment and the shutdown of general outpatient clinics. It also proves that the shortage of medical resources, incomplete medical information, and the fear of getting infected on the way have caused trouble for residents to seek medical treatment.
Location: Wuhan, China
Health Status: with mild symptoms but not infected COVID-19
Usually by watching TV and WeChat group, know about the latest developments of the epidemic, most concerned about the number of infected people, and the relevant national policies on epidemic control.
Because of the epidemic, worry about the risk of infection during medical treatment, so will choose to seek help from the community or go online
Concerned about the epidemic in the community, especially the trajectory of the diagnosed patients
Can perform basic operations on mobile platforms, but do not like to use apps with complex operations
When getting sick during the epidemic, need to buy it online or find an acquaintance in the hospital
Usually make the appointment online with the app to avoid waiting for the hospital for too long
As the epidemic bans vehicles and restricts traffic, cannot go out to see a doctor and hope the community can provide relevant vehicles and medical treatment plans
Want policies to reduce the risk to ensure that the public can seek medical treatment
Want to get relevant medical examination and treatment if getting sick
Don't want to spend too much time on the medical treatment process (queuing, waiting)
Want to know how to obtain and use general medication and prescription medication, which are need for treatment at home
User Journey Map
Non-COVID patients who need medical treatment in Wuhan
Self-diagnose at home
Seek help online
Get treatment in the neighborhood
Getting diagnosis or even treatment at home or in the neighborhood without going to the hospital
Non-COVID patients who need medical treatment in Wuhan
Potential COVID-19 patients
Help the patients self-diagnose, make and arrange appointments
Help the neighborhood handle the distribution and delivery of medication
Exclusively for non-COVID patients
Offer help with getting treatment meanwhile lower the risk of cross-infection
Non-COVID patients can go to community hospitals to get diagnosis and treatment by making appointments online.
Online initial diagnosis
upload initial symptom descriptions, doctors give feedback online
offer channels for treatment medicines and links to medication purchase
COVID-19 related information for non-COVID patients in neighboring communities, trace map of COVID patients (avoid cross-infection)
offer information forwarding, comments on medical experience, and a mutual aid community
This product is a medical assistant for non-COVID patients who have mild disease symptoms and medical needs in the pandemic area, a comprehensive medical service platform:
Provide medical information to help patients do preliminarily self-diagnosis, make timely appointments and arrange online initial diagnosis, follow-up with offline treatment in community hospitals, and provide transportation and distribution of therapeutic drugs.
In the case of shortage of medical resources during the special period of the epidemic, efficiently help the patients to be rationally diverted, arrange more non-COVID patients to home diagnosis and community medical treatment, minimize the risk of cross-infection during medical treatment, and also reduce the medical burden on the hospital.
*The drawing is done by another teammate
“I have a toothache!”
What if you have a mild illness but you are afraid of going to the hospital?
Book an appointment on iHealth!
“This neighborhood needs a doctor to go!”
The platform will collect the number of patients and doctors needed and designate doctors.
The neighborhood will set a time with doctors to meet with patients in a centralized way.
"You need to eat less sugar!"
The doctors will meet with patients orderly.
User Work Flow
Making the appointment workflow
Intelligent Recognition of the Community
The medical appointments that users make are arranged and transported by the community as a unit. However, at the same time, many users will have the problem of not knowing which community they live in. In order not to interrupt the user's reservation process and save time for the user to the greatest extent to "grab" the ideal reservation quota as soon as possible, we decided to use automatic locating when users start the reservation or trigger the address filling operation. Then fill in the address and intelligently identify the community. After the recognition is done, the information will be presented to users for confirmation. If there is an error, users can choose to manually modify the information.
In the appointment process, we use the model adopted by many online medical platforms, allowing users to select the appointment department and doctor step by step. If users cannot determine the specific department at this time, in the real offline process, users will reach to the front desk before registration, so we set up an online manual assistant whom users can directly turn to within the interface. This also keeps the completeness and fluency of the appointment process.
Intelligent Time Recommendation
When selecting a time slot, with the users' consent, the product obtains the schedule of users and intelligently recommends the proper time period according to users' schedules. This is to prevent users from repeatedly switching the platforms to view their schedule or mistakenly selecting the conflicting time period. As a remedy for potential recognition errors, the unrecommended time period is only grayed out or displayed as unavailable but still selectable, which is convenient for users to view.
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