Hacking Health 2013 Project: Human Maintenance Manual App

Janis Yee  

Our proposal was a look at how patient-facing medical records could allow patients to take more responsibility for their own health.

Assortment of tools for planning personal healthcare.
Assortment of tools for planning personal healthcare.

The 2nd Annual Hacking Health held an event on Nov 8-10, 2013 involving the collaboration between I.T. and Health Industry professionals towards resolving real world issues through the use of existing and innovating technology.

Our team’s proposal won the award as the Best Tool to Contribute to Behaviour Change. This award was generously provided by Beworks.

“I’m a 30 year old healthy individual. What tests and checks should I be seeing my family doctor for on a periodic basis? I have no guide to help me with this.”

The Problem

When was the last time you went for a checkup? Do you know what your immunization record looks like? What about when your next Tetanus shot should be? Doctors have become the archivists of our medical records and unless we work on asking the right questions, may not be as transparent as we would like them to be. How can we become more proactive with our health?

Our “What if” Solution

Imagine a set of patient-facing medical records that could allow patients to take more responsibility for their own health? If cars have maintenance manuals, why don’t people have one for their own health?

When our project team first approached this project, we started with seeing how to leverage the Blu+ API in Canada, a tool developed in the States that provides secure access to Personal Health Records. Our proposed Blu+ App would receive information from Blu+ API to create a modern patient-facing digital dashboard of health records. It would include tools such as reminders for upcoming appointments, immunizations, and extensions to track diet and fitness.

In a nutshell, it would be a detailed interactive timeline of things you need to do to stay out of the hospital, from age zero to 110.

For clinicians, Blue Button enables download of medical records and upload of data from the app. Healthcare teams are then fully aware of patient progress and the care that has been completed to date in your life. Note that Blue Button is only available in the US to over 60 million Americans, and there are plans to bring it to Ontario.

The Proposed Results

Provision of this awareness encourages the average populace to be more pro-active in their own health, which in turn may result in up to a 5-6 year increase in your lifespan and reduce the number of medical visits annually.

Blu+ App Logo
Blu+ Logo

Our Team: Hadi Salah, Mustafa Kurdi, Timothy Sun, Lester Sy, Ian Gerald King, Alex Lee, Rahim Dhanani, Vejay Karthic Gandier

My Role: UX / UI Designer

Shown Below: On Left: Sign In Screen. Right: Home screen dashboard displaying patient status by colour, and an automated timeline.

Home screens for the app showing sign in and timeline features.
Home screens for the app showing sign in and timeline features.

Shown Below: View of Patient Status and recommendations for the Patient’s Lifeestyle (left) and Clinical Adherence (right).

Screens depicting health related graphs.
Screens depicting health related graphs.

View my take on the Hacking Health 2013 event

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[2017 Update] What I could have done better

If I had the chance to work on this project again with more time and resources, I would:

  • Start with more user research to validate that a problem exists
  • Understand the persona and environment of the Patient and the Doctor
  • Establish a baseline of what people already know about their own health needs.
  • Put doctors and patients together in a room for co-creation of a sustainable knowledge transfer tool so patients can better understand their own treatment path.
  • Examine how to better embed the tool into the lives of busy people such as parents and caregivers.
  • Looked at it more holistically beyond just solving with a digital solution.