Public Health Ontario

UX and User Research in Public Health

Previously, I worked as the UX designer at Public Health Ontario (PHO). I work with all facets of the organization to develop user-centered solutions. The main user groups are epidemiologists, health professionals, public health units and laboratory clients. A selection of my projects are below.

Responsive, Accessible, User-Centered Website

My first assignment was to help create a user-centered website. The previous website was inward facing and was difficult to navigate for our core audiences. It had numerous inconsistent page designs, was not mobile friendly, and had outdated content. I worked with an external vendor to design the website and was a champion of the users we engaged with and the business needs. My main tasks were: user research, persona development, information architecture, working with the vendor to create consistent page components and designs and project management. Once the vendor was complete I unified the design, created the style guide and continued to develop pages and content with our internal stakeholders. I then worked with the vendor who developed the website in Sitecore. One of my simple yet impactful innovations with developing quick specimen requirement tables for our 320 laboratory test pages to reduce sampling and form errors in laboratory tests. This project was done via empathy exercises and usability testing and required internal buy-in to revise and approve the test structure.

image of PHO website screen in desktop and mobile

Data Visualizations

PHO has numerous data visualizations created in various products (Instant Atlas, ArcGIS, PowerPivot, Powerview, Sharepoint and custom Javascript) by different people, over time. This posed many challenges in creating a unified presentation on the new website.  I developed a style guide that could be used to edit existing data visualizations, with as little developer effort as possible, and to provide a detailed guideline for products moving forward. Another challenge was to determine which data we could present in a useful and productive way for our users. We assessed each project and reviewed the hardware our users work on to help make our decisions.

PHO Data Visualizations

Well Water App

Public Health Ontario’s only public-facing service is well water testing. The number of tests completed by our laboratory has been dropping over the years since the Walkerton E.Coli outbreak. This concern prompted the investigation into developing a well water app to help engage well water owners and increase testing. I owned this project from research to wireframe prototype.

The project took 3 months and I was responsible for:

  • Recruiting and conducting user interviews with well water owners
  • Surveying contractors who work with wells on problems they encounter
  • Speaking to the SMEs concerned with well water at PHO and in the community
  • Developing personas and user journeys using the research
  • Using the above user journeys to run a brainstorming solutions session with SMEs
  • Developing a prototype and presentation for PHO to understand the key features of the potential app

Well Water User Journey and Persona

View the wireframe prototype in InVision.

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