The Tzu Chi foundation based out of Taiwan is among the largest charitable organizations in the world. It is founded on the principles of compassion and providing relief and believes in direct donations and dignity of life. It has thousands of volunteers around the globe engaged in recycling, donations and disaster relief.
We were approached by the Tzu Chi medical foundation which runs a chain of hospitals providing patients with a wide range of medical facilities and services in Taiwan. They have plans of extending their footprint in Penang and Malaysia. They also maintain a bone marrow register, drug testing laboratory and performs precision surgery. Their requirement was for a healthcare web app solution for the hospitals, patients, volunteers, medical specialists, and caregivers.
The task required understanding the complex intricacies of the medical profession and their working style, understanding the needs of the patients and how their lives can be enhanced by web services. It also involved managing vast amounts of patient data and securing patient details. It was also necessary to understand what existing systems were in place and how to make use of the data inside them. Designing a system which was an enhancement over the existing system was our goal but not at the cost of alienating the existing users. Also, the new web app needed to seamlessly work in conjunction with the existing systems of the mother organization.
Identifying the users who were going to use the web app was the first step. Every user who created an account on the web app was given a unique identification ID. Based on their characteristics the users were further classified based on their role and user type. Single Sign-On (SSO) was implemented so that any user once signed into the app could seamlessly move across its modules while only seeing and having access to data that he or she was authorized to access.
The next step was to understand the activities and what kind of data was being associated and generated. It involved managing the back end for the processes such as booking a medical checkup/ appointment and matching that appointment with the availability of a doctor, and setting reminders for that appointment, as well as documenting the diagnosis and medical prescription. User-friendly dashboards were designed detailing the patient medical background, test results, and treatment administered to be used by doctors. Dashboards were also designed for hospital staff detailing shift timings and availability of caregivers.
The major modules within the app were the user manager, scheduler and the case manager. Besides these modules, it also supported news and forum pages for recent updates and location mapping of the network of hospitals, volunteers and caregivers.