Our team, based on our own experiences, found the process of finding a medical provider challenging and we couldn’t reason why it was so difficult. Over 16 weeks, my team explored the complex issues impacting the journey to finding a doctor.
Our final solution, Vaeta (a play on Aetna and Vita, meaning “life”), became a system of products, services and applications that encouraged a more proactive and integrative approach to health management in order to mitigate anxiety and provide a platform for meeting personal health goals.
- NFC-enabled Card, an upgrade to the medical insurance card that tracks healthy purchases and earns rewards.
- Self-tracking Wristband & App that captures sleep patterns, physical activity, exercise, weight and temperature. The app shows users data visualizations and gives them rewards on the go.
- Home Dashboard that aggregates information from the wristband and card into a single picture of healthy living.
- Vaeta Rewards Marketplace, accessed through the home dashboard, where points can be redeemed for discounts on healthy activities, healthy eating and insurance premiums.
- Doctor Network is a visualization of family, friends and doctors is accessed through the home dashboard and makes it easy to get referrals from the people users trust the most.
See our final presentation here: Finding A Doctor Synthesis Presentation.
Where the System Goes Wrong Now
In our analysis, we discovered that there was a mismatch between how information was handled versus how it should have been handled in these doctor-finding tools. Our insights could be sorted into three categories: information needs, information anxieties and information flow.
- Information Needs.
Knowable and un-knowable information is usually treated the same, as finite pieces of information that have a right answer. Knowable information, as we defined it, is information that has a clear answer, such as whether the insurance is accepted and office hours. Un-knowable information is information that could be change according to the person such as the doctor’s personality and office cleanliness.
- Information Anxieties.
Especially when users are sick, they worry about what’s wrong, who can be trusted to help them and whether the prescribed treatments will work. All of these unknowns make the process even more anxiety-inducing.
- Information Flow.
Our personal network has great influence but they can’t be relied on for clinical information and each user uses their past experience to help them determine their future behaviors. However, doctors don’t consider that patients leverage information from multiple sources and communication is unidirectional.