Newsroom & Blog

Aug 27, 2019   |   Blog Post

Designing Human-Centered Electronic Immunization Registries

Health worker prepares vaccine.

By VillageReach

In order to reach more children with life-saving immunizations, VillageReach is applying human-centered design (HCD) methodology towards the development of an electronic immunization registry (EIR) in Mozambique. HCD can be used to establish solutions that fulfill a population’s needs and improve health outcomes. As an EIR is designed to digitize paper-based immunization records, it is important to understand how these records are updated and maintained from a human-centered perspective.

HCD is a process that places humans at the center of each step, so that the solution is tailored to their needs.[1]

These steps include:

  • Inspirationwe begin to understand the problem, as well as our users.
  • Ideationwe begin to brainstorm ways in which we can address the issue by analyzing our data.
  • Implementationwe plan how we will implement our solution with potential users.

VillageReach recently completed the Inspiration phase and is currently in the Ideation phase of HCD.

The first step in designing a human-centered EIR involves identifying users and understanding what they need in the system. The team went through a process of observing and interviewing immunization staff to better understand the future users’ environment. [2],[3] This included observing health facility immunization sessions and mobile brigades, as well as interviewing immunization staff and their supporting team members (i.e., maternal and child health nurses, nutrition program leads, etc), who are responsible for ensuring all children receive the full course of Mozambique’s recommended immunizations. The team followed this process at approximately 20 health facilities in Manica and Zambezia Provinces during June and August 2019.

Next, we analyzed interview and observation data to establish user personas and journey maps. Our personas for the future EIR can be accessed here and our journey map can be accessed here .[4], [5], [6] The personas and journey map have allowed us to understand where and how an EIR would most likely operate within the immunization delivery and management processes. Our next phase of work will include workshops with representatives from health facilities, Mozambican Ministry of Health, and other NGOs to continue gathering and understanding what users’ need in an EIR.

After our upcoming workshops, we will begin strategizing how to work with the Mozambican Ministry of Health to assess the best pathway for EIR implementation. We plan to provide additional updates on this progress, but if you have any questions or would like to learn more about our work, please feel free to reach out to us via e-mail.

[1] IDEO.org, The Field Guide to Human-Centered Design, (Canada, 2015).
[2] The Usability Body of Knowledge, Contextual Inquiry, Last modified 2012. http://usability.bok.org/contextual-inquiry
[3] Erol Basusta, Contextual Inquiry: Observing How Users Interact with Systems and Workflows, Published August 5, 2015. https://www.usertesting.com/blog/contextual-inquiry/
[4] Usability.gov, Personas, Accessed on April 2, 2019. https://www.usability.gov/how-to-and-tools/methods/personas.html
[5] Megan Grocki, How to Create a Customer Journey Map, Accessed on April 2, 2019. https://uxmastery.com/how-to-create-a-customer-journey-map/
[6] Miro, Team collaboration software & online whiteboards for teams, Last modified 2019. https://miro.com/
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