HxRefactored Sneak Preview: Katie McCurdy, Experience Design // UX Designer & Researcher
To give you another HxRefactored Conference sneak preview, we’ve interviewed Katie McCurdy. Katie uses her own experience, both as a patient and a designer, to make participatory design a bigger part of heathcare.
What is your burning mission in health and why?
KMC: My mission is to use my design skills to help improve the healthcare experience of other patients like me. I work to help patients take control and ownership of the communication they have with providers, and I advocate for close collaboration with patients throughout the design process. I love my job, and I love to feel good about applying myself to helping improve the lives of my patient kinfolk.
What is your patient story?
KMC: I have had the autoimmune disease Myasthenia Gravis since I was 13. It was always a minor part of my life, but it never defined me. Over time, many of my symptoms began to become more prominent, and simultaneously I went to school and became a User Experience Designer. (Are those things related? It’s possible.) Soon I started applying my design background toward solving some of my own health problems – like how to communicate better about my health history, and how to visualize my symptoms. I found it really helped improve my experience in the healthcare system, and before long I decided to take the leap into a career focusing solely on healthcare UX; there are so many other healthcare problems that need dedicated and idealistic designers.
What new health-related website, app, or technology do you think will improve health?
KMC: I have great hope in healthcare data exchanges and blue button technology that will allow data to flow between systems and apps. The fragmented nature of my health information has caused me untold hours of lost time, money spent on unnecessary procedures. I look forward to the day when patients can contribute to their ‘official’ records.
Why should people come to your session?
KMC: Understanding the necessity, utility, and process of involving end users in your design process benefits you in so many ways. It helps you create products that are more competitive, viable, and beloved. It saves you money by helping you build the right product in the first place. It gives you an advantage over competing products, because you are able to understand deeply-rooted mindsets, mental models, and emotions; and you can use this knowledge to create the right solution at the right time for your users. Join Susan and me for a very hands-on session and a lively discussion.