I have co-lead UX design on the Fresenius patient Portal since June 2017. Feature improvements (research, design, testing, and launch) have been made to patient lab results and vital sign graphs, and we have successfully launched a new online ordering process for dialysis supplies. Features are designed for all breakpoints: desktop, laptop, tablet, and mobile.

Dialysis Supplies Ordering

PORTAL OVERVIEW

The patient Portal is a website and mobile application that gives dialysis patients 24-hour access to their personal health information. For patients who dialyze at home, the ability to submit treatment data to their care team in real-time helps facilitate quicker communication which can lead to better health outcomes.

I have worked on the following features, with involvement ranging from requirement-defining, field research and investigation, wireframing, designing, user testing with prototype, iteration, and final visual design handoff:

  • Portal dashboard display
  • Flowsheet: dialysis treatment entry form
  • Patient labs and vital sign graphs
  • Online ordering and notifications
  • Patient Community feature
  • Calendar
Online ordering PROJECT

For home dialysis, every 14-28 days patients are delivered sometimes thirty or more boxes of supplies for treatment. Our team was tasked with designing, testing, and implementing an online ordering system, where patients can place an order based on their medical prescription and/or be recommended a supply order based on their monthly usage of supplies and current on-hand inventory.

Final solution of online ordering allows users to order supplies based on their prescription list and limit, and warns a patient when they might run out of an item before the next delivery. Users can also sign up to receive text and email notifications about their delivery status.

A Collaborative, Iterative Process

Myself and a co-designer worked collaboratively across departments, teams, and continents to understand the project context and user needs, help define requirements, user test in person with patients and caregivers, and refine the design over six months.

Process:

A project workshop in Chicago allowed us to observe the current over-the-phone ordering process  in order to better understand the patient's routine and mental model when ordering supplies.

Testing, design critique, iteration


Once initial wireframes and low fidelity mock ups were created, we went through multiple rounds of designs iterations, all of which were informed by feedback during department-wide design reviews and multiple rounds of in-person user testing with patients and caregivers.

One major insight we found during testing was that, depending on a patient's length of time on dialysis, they ordered supplies over the phone in two very different ways. One set of patients who were more experienced, knew exactly how many boxes of each item they wanted to order each month. The second set of patients had a longer conversation with the customer service representative, who would calculate a suggested order for them based on their on-hand inventory and daily usage.

This presented a major challenge: how might we design a flow that allows a patient to order via both methods, so that a new user can be given a suggested order, but a more experienced user isn't frustrated by the hassle of going through a more complex form?

It goes without saying that the communication and collaboration across multiple teams was a key factor in finding a solution to this problem, in addition to seeking feedback from real patients throughout the process. We formed a "patient advisory board" with a small group of engaged patients who gave invaluable feedback both in person and during remote sessions throughout the entire project.

Outcome & Reflection

PILOT AND  launcH

After final visual design handoff and daily collaboration with our development team (agile/scrum methodology) we led a pilot with five clinics. The staggered feature rollout allowed us to continue to collect direct user feedback from patients and make small adjustments to designs and functionality before broad launch.

The feature is currently successfully launched to all patient Portal users, available on desktop, laptop, tablet, and mobile devices.

Relfection

While the feature has successfully launched, we are continuing to collect feedback, especially about this challenge in particular. For our team, a design is never final as we constantly seek to improve the experience of our patients, and by extension, their health outcomes.