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Encouraging Patient Compliance Through the Device

Mon, 07/22/2013 - 2:02pm
Yusuf Shirazi, Founder & CEO, Usability.Pro

Encouraging compliance is a critically important—and often overlooked—aspect of a product’s design. Compliance is relegated to a discussion between patient and caregiver, but I believe the device should play an active role.

First, the user experience must be friendly. This covers not only the daily user interaction, but also, the out-of-box experience and initial set up. A device that’s frustrating to use will be used less often, or at least with less enthusiasm.

Second, the device must actively encourage proper use. I have an electric toothbrush that does a fantastic job letting me know that I’ve brushed long enough and in the correct way. Each time I use it, I want to earn my “four stars.” Too many devices focus on getting their job done that they don’t provide sufficient feedback to the user, other than in failures.

And that leads to a third point—the device must make the patient feel like an active participant in his care. Modern fitness gadgets are good examples, by being cloud-connected and offering live updates via the web and mobile phones. Extending that concept to patient monitors, instead of just collecting data and passing it to the caregiver, the device should involve the patient and make more than just a physical connection.

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