Nimble

For my capstone project for BrainStation’s full-time UX program, I decided to tackle the pharmacy experience. From generative research, analysis, wireframing, and prototyping I designed a patient facing pharmacy management app. 

Nimble allows users to fill their prescriptions with their phones, access their medication history, receive reminders to take their daily medication, and read accurate, succinct, and jargon-free information about their medicine. 
nimble mockup composition

The Current Experience

Pharmacy plays a vital role in the healthcare system and is one of the most accessible healthcare services in the country—with an estimated 10,000 pharmacies across Canada. Despite advances in scope and access, the pharmacy experience has remained unchanged for over 100 years. 

Today, the pharmacy experience is archaic, siloed, and hampered by decades-old regulation. It continues to be held back by 90’s technology and paper-based workflows.

Building on my pharmacy background I interviewed six people to learn about their pharmacy experience.

Pain Points

After the sixth interview, it became clear that users were running into these challenges: 
1.
Filling a prescription for the first time is a dreaded experience. Users described it as slow, cold, and inconvenient.
2.
Users rarely have a way of managing their prescriptions. They often lose track of when they need to get another refill or if they need a new prescription from their doctor.
3.
Users often forget what their pharmacist told them and found the information pamphlet overwhelming. If they have a quick question about their medication, they ask their friends or Google. 
nimble customer experience map

How Might We?

Given the 10-week timeline I decided to focus on the following design challenges:
How might we make it simpler for patients to fill their prescriptions?
How might we provide patients with accurate and easy-to-read medical information?
How might we help patients take their medication as prescribed?

Exploring Design Options

I explored a variety of design solutions drawing from a variety of inspirations—ranging from unrelated fields, known design patterns, and some of my favourite apps.  
hand drawn sketches of nimble screens

Iterating & Validating Designs

I ran my early set of sketches through a round of guerrilla testing using Marvel’s Pop app to eliminate poor assumptions and iterate on my design solutions quickly.  

Through two rounds of usability testing, I was able to weed out both small, and significant issues. 
Early prototypes launched the app directly into a camera screen to fill a prescription. This proved to be disorienting to users and didn’t align with their expected behaviour. 

In both guerrilla testing and user testing sessions, users indicated that they would expect to open the app a couple of times a week whereas they would only fill a prescription once a month. 

Several design iterations helped to understand this problem better and arrive at a design solution that met user needs. With this particular challenge, I designed the app to launch into the home screen and make it the user’s medication hub.

Nimble

Pharmacy. Reimagined.

Adherence Cards

The first set of cards included a lot of text and it was difficult for users to quickly scan the card and know what to do next. It lacked hierarchy, glanceability, and action

Several rounds of user testing gave clarity on how to help users remember when, how, and why to take their medications. 

Medication. Past and Present.

Most users simply don’t keep track of their medication history and if they do, they rely on a number of resources that they’ve glued together. 

With this design, I intended to give the user access to their medication information—past and present. And a place to read about their medication in a succinct, accurate, friendly, and jargon-free way. 

TL;DR

When a medication is dispensed from a pharmacy for the first time, the pharmacy provides an information leaflet for the patient to take home. When asked about the information leaflet, users found value in it but thought it was difficult to understand at best, and overwhelming and scary at worst.  

Using the information provided in the information leaflet and drawing on my healthcare experience I designed and wrote a TL;DR for each medication. 

I made sure the language is accurate, friendly, welcoming, reassuring, and easy to understand. The conversational tone resonated well with users during testing. 

Filling a Prescription

A strong signal that I received during user interviews is that users did not appreciate the time they spent filling a prescription. There was a lot of idle time for the user that led to impatience and frustration. 

After several iterations and a few rounds of user testing I designed an easy, deslightful, and intuitive prescription filling flow.

Auto-triage

These two questions are almost always asked every time a prescription is filled. Including them here expedites the prescription filling process and ensures that the pharmacy gets everything they need to deliver a safe healthcare experience. 

What is taking so long?

A question I heard often when I interviewed users. When probed further — it usually wasn’t a matter of whether this experience can be faster but a matter of being in the know. Once a user fills their prescription a prominent status card takes precedence on their home screen to keep the patient in the know at all times during the process. 

Closing Thoughts

While I couldn’t measure the impact of this design in the real world, working on this project kicked off my journey into the world of UX and product design. I would jump at the opportunity to build something like this and test the real-world impact on patients.
 
Working on this project has also left me with even more questions that I’d like to explore and has taught me a lesson about the power of asking good questions.  

Sugar

Helped bring Sugar Mobile's new experience to life. Designed the entire desktop and mobile experience.