A patient-led approach to product innovation in patient education and wound management

McNicol, Elaine and McKay, Alison and Milligan, Christine and Bennett, Kate and Hulme, Rod and Joy, Heather (2015) A patient-led approach to product innovation in patient education and wound management. European Wound Management Association Journal, 15 (1): April Edit. pp. 47-51.

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This paper reports results from a multi-disciplinary industry-academia research partnership whose goal was to conceive, design and prototype solutions for older adults with chronic wounds. Aim: The aim of the project was to explore the potential enhanced benefits of extended patient involvement in an entire live product development process, from understanding the wound care environment, through needs identification, to solution generation and iteration. Methods: An action-design research methodology was used to engage with 47 target users and develop design ideas and prototypes. The research was built around a theoretical framework that integrates aspirations and needs of target users with socio-technical systems thinking and innovation management processes. Results: The design component of the research methodology resulted in the concept design of a wound management education and information system for use by patients and their caregivers. This concept was developed based on observations of and interaction with patients and caregivers. A prototype solution was built and used as a vehicle to gain an understanding of opportunities, issues, and challenges to be addressed in supporting older adults with chronic wounds and enabling them to maintain and improve their personal wellbeing. This led to the identification of the need for readily available, current wound care information, advice, and support for older people and caregivers. The design concept was a response to this need. From early evaluations of a prototype implementation, age was identified as not necessarily being a barrier to the use of a technology-based solution; IT skills, confidence, and access to the internet were identified as more important factors. Outcomes: A prototypical wound care information system was developed that has been evaluated with target users using deliberative panels and home-based evaluations of a prototype implemented on a tablet platform. Wound care solutions focussed on the need to support people in maintaining their personal wellbeing lead to different requirements from those that support wound treatment. By considering wider perspectives, solution providers have opportunities to utilise fewer or re-allocate resources whilst improving user wellbeing by creating user-focussed outcomes that are effective, efficient, and valued by both patient and provider.

Item Type:
Journal Article
Journal or Publication Title:
European Wound Management Association Journal
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Deposited On:
19 Aug 2015 11:22
Last Modified:
28 Nov 2023 11:21