Design Sprint for Health Innovators
In November of 2016, I attended a day-long design sprint as part of Seattle Startup Week. Three industry stakeholders presented us with urgent health challenges facing their clientele.
Using a condensed version of the method described in the book Sprint, our group immersed ourselves in the growing problem of opioid addiction and rapidly prototyped a solution that could used as a starting point for State of Washington stakeholders.
- Conducted online research to better understand the problem
- Participated in empathy mapping and affinity diagramming exercises
- Crafted point of view statements and participated in discussion of project scope
- Collaborated with team-members to devise an education and support service for people receiving prescriptions for opioid pain medications
- Presented proposed service to stakeholders and attendees
Our team used the resources available to us to better understand the issue. Some people conducted brief interviews with present health professionals and former addicts, while I delved into first-person accounts and published literature online.
The next step was to take what we’d learned and organize it into themes and concepts to better understand the affected population. We began with an empathy map, where we sorted observations into what people affected by addiction might hear, think, feel, say and do.
Then we further categorized what we’d learned into greater themes to better understand the scope of the problem. Finally, we individually devised POV statements using suggested templates, then came together to solidify a direction.
With the problem understood and defined, we began to think of possible solutions. This took the form of individual brainstorming followed by lively discussion. We weighed the merits of each suggestion, incorporated the best aspects of several, and finally arrived at an idea that seemed to fit the defined scope and stakeholder preferences.
The idea we had come up with was an educational and support service that would be made available to patients who were prescribed opioid pain medication. There was an in person component as well as a mobile app and website.
At the end of the day, our group was gave a 10-minute presentation involved a restating of the problem, a summary of our process, and an explanation of our solution involving flowcharts, roleplaying, and paper prototypes. We took questions from the audience and passed our work onto the stakeholder.