Anders Rosengren, MD PhD, approached Cooper from Lund University in Sweden, one of the top 100 universities worldwide, with a plan to help people suffering from type 2 diabetes lead healthier lives. The groundbreaking project included plans for a new approach to health care service, a community platform for social support, and tools for tracking data and maintaining motivation.
PriusHealth had plenty of room for the Cooper team to build visual design from the ground up. We ended up with an approachable, professional product that feels less like a traditional medical service and more like a tracker for personal health goals. Attractive and comfortable to use, it enables type 2 diabetes patients to not only check on their personal progress, but to easily connect with their peers to share experiences and offer support.
Cooper worked with Lund’s short development timeline to deliver design in quick bursts, interviewing stakeholders and users and holding workshops in the process. The design focused not just on usability, but also on using supportive and trustworthy visual style and language to create experiences that help users look forward to checking in.
“The Cooper team was very receptive to our ideas and the special user requirements but opened up exciting new directions that we had not previously considered”
When we looked at other web portals for diabetes, we found that they mostly had an objective, quantitative focus that lacked a personal touch. Keeping in mind that a type 2 diabetes diagnosis means making big personal health changes, we designed an engaging signature interaction interface that makes habit-building easier. Integrating diabetes-related health goals with the user’s personal values transformed a bothersome chore into a source of motivation.
Based on ethnographic interviews with patients and nurse practitioners, Cooper connected each user’s personal motivations and life goals to their diabetes management habits. By grounding action plans and learning modules for long-term health in users’ own values, the design helps create an understanding of why a healthier life is important.
Also included in the design is a mentorship program that encourages users to connect with each other not just as friends, but also as advisors. Through this program, users can tell their stories and both offer and accept support from others in their situation.
Because of its new design, PriusHealth looks like it might just become a major global platform for people with diabetes. The site design turns this new way of thinking about diabetes treatment into a way of life focused on health and quality living.
Heading for future development, Anders is now leading a study of thousands of type 2 diabetes patients with PriusHealth as the focal point. The study aims to continue improving quality of life and advance its capacity to help people self-manage the disease.
“Working with Cooper was a truly creative experience that both broadened and solidified our vision."
- Anders Rosengren, MD PhD
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