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Concept design

Creating a healthcare solution for travelers

Timeframe: 1 week, completed in May 2016
Tools: Sketch, Marvel

Overview

This project was about identifying a challenge within the field of travel and designing an app that would provide a solution.

Challenge

Helping travelers access quality medical care without the difficulties of a language barrier.

Discovery

Research: I started off with validating my initial idea by interviewing people in my class and in social media outlets. Interviews let me determine the main pain points:

    •    People often forget to pack medicines
    •    They have difficulties in finding a hospital or pharmacy when traveling to non-English-speaking countries
    •    Language barrier when trying to communicate with foreign medical professionals

I did further research and gathered some data on the numbers of Americans traveling abroad and their experiences with foreign medical systems.  I also researched several countries to see what pharmacies and the packaging of certain types of medicine looked like.

Define

Solution: Initially I thought of an app that would help solve problems within two different time categories - before the user travels and when the user is already at the destination. However, after testing this concept, I had to discard the "before travel" part, as most users did not express any interest in this feature.

 

Design

Testing: In the first round of testing, I was validating my ideas rather than the app's functionality.  I found out that most people in the test group did not care much for pre-travel health arrangements.  Overall, the app seemed to be overloaded with features and I decided to concentrate on functions related to providing assistance to people already traveling.  I sketched a new version and performed another round of testing.  This time, some usability findings were revealed that helped me reiterate my sketches before creating low-fidelity wireframes.

Mock-up: TraWell will help you find a hospital/Dr. where/with whom you can communicate in English.  The app will determine your location and will suggest a map list with directions for nearby hospitals and doctors in distance order.  Doctors' list will allow filtering by speciality.

The app will help find a pharmacy and a local medicine equivalent.  The "find pharmacy" page will display an image of a typical pharmacy at the user’s location.  User can enter his/her usual medicine name in the search tab and then images of local medicine equivalents will populate.  User can click on the image and get a pop-up screen with detailed information. 

The app will provide 24/7 online support by a U.S.-based medical provider network. User can call the hotline, send a message or engage in live chat.

This is the desktop landing page for TraWell, courtesy of Chije Wangati:

TraWell desktop landing page

Takeaways

It was exciting to conceptualize and design something that I believe would not only help people but also be a successful commercial product for an insurance, travel or airline company.  Generating content for the app may be the trickiest part - creating a database of overseas medical providers who speak English can be time consuming task.  However, there may be potential solutions for that.  For example, a lot of expat forums exist where medical providers is one of the most popular subjects, and these can provide clues about potential providers to partner with.  Alternatively, the app can be marketed to large international insurance companies, which often have their own networks.  

Questions or comments? I would love to hear from you!