How a medical devices company used a mobile diary-study to understand a week in the life of the consultants who prescribed their products
Medical devices play a huge role in improving the lives of millions of patients around the world. Advancements in technology have meant that many common ailments now have medtech solutions that can have a positive impact in a variety of ways.
One such area where the industry has been transformed is audiology. Those who suffer from hearing loss now have a host of solutions that can dramatically improve their everyday lives.
The rapid development of audiology medical devices has meant that treating hearing loss in patients is now much easier than in the past. But the rapid development of technology also presents challenges.
Our client had previously done a lot of research on their end-users experiences. They were satisfied that those who were prescribed their hearing devices were seeing impactful, positive changes in their lives. But there was a greater challenge that faced them in the product cycle. Their hearing solution was based upon a piece of hardware that needed to be both fitted and programmed by audiology consultants. This proved a challenge as it meant that audiologists needed to understand the product itself and its practical application cases. Furthermore, they also needed to use the accompanying software to programme the hearing devices to the individual need of each patient.
Understanding consultants user experience of their software, how they prescribed their device and how the patient reacted to it in the context of a consultancy room were still a mystery.
Our clients objectives were to:
Understand the typical day/week in the life of an audiologist and the role which their devices played in it
Gain an insight into how audiologists prescribed, fitted and programmed their hearing devices
Understand what other tools audiologists used in conjunction with their hearing devices and software in the context of consultancy rooms
Medical consultants are a particularly difficult target group to understand from a research perspective. Not alone do they have hectic schedules in high-pressure environments, but they must be conscious of patient confidentiality and data protection. For this reason, it is difficult for researchers to gain access to analyse medical devices in context and in-the-moment.
Working with Indeemo, our client recognised that a mobile-diary study would allow them unparalleled access to audiologists within the setting of their consultancies. Not only did Indeemo’s technology allow them access to consultants, but because of its accessibility and cost-effectiveness, it allowed them to simultaneously run the project with consultants in different countries, on different continents.
Throughout the course of the week, our client used a scheduled task list to gather photo and video uploads giving instant feedback on their devices, their software, patient interactions and consultancy wrap-ups using the Indeemo app on their smartphones. They also built a greater understanding of the routines, challenges and daily activities which impacted on audiologists and even their patients.
Using the Indeemo dashboard for their analysis, they were quickly able to spot trends amongst audiologists when it came to the challenges their medical devices presented. Indeed, some design issues that had provided a challenge to patients user experience were even identified as a result of seeing how consultants adapted the devices for individual patients.
If your looking to understand more about how a medical devices manufacturer or brand can use diary-studies to understand how medical professionals engage with their products, please get in touch using the form below.
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