Well, study week is coming to an end. These past couple of days have been amazing working with so many people to put my team's solution together for Seneca’s 2021 Digital Health Hackathon. Team AREN (that’s us!) took on the challenge set of a Patient Data Consent System:
A data access system that makes it easy for medical professionals to gain access to patient data but also preserves confidentiality and privacy of patients. Patients can give consent to share only what they want to share and medical staff can only gain access to what they need and what was released by the patient. In the event of an emergency, all critical data for treatment must be released to medical staff.
We had five days to design a software solution that utilized blockchain technology to solve this problem, and throughout this blog you will get a glimpse as to how we went about it.
First, we had to figure out the scope of what the requirements were — what do the judges specifically want? After looking at the last year's winners, we noted that the actual solution did not necessarily have to be fully implemented and coded. We saw that they demoed their app with Adobe XD, something that my partner NesaByte and I had a lot of experience using. Quickly we started thinking about how our app would work. In my opinion, one of the best ways to design a patient-centric app is to think about the actual use cases. We got to work on Adobe XD designing and prototyping the initial idea. What we came up with is an app that the doctor can use to see the patient data — and with our initial idea done, we went into the first mentorship meeting to present our work.
Long story short, our idea got roasted.
Don’t Take It Personally, Learn and Move On
The only question we asked the sponsors were “are we on the right track?” Quick answer — no. To give a little bit of context, the sponsors (CapitalBlockchain) were to be the ones to meet with us twice throughout the hackathon to guide us to the solutions they wanted, and the mobile app that we presented to them was not it. Two things they mentioned were that they wanted it to be fast to use, quick and simple while still providing security. What we had was an app with a lot of functionality and detail, but at a cost of its simplicity. We had to keep in mind that our target market included the elderly and those who may not be well versed in technology.
We took our harsh lesson to make it easier to use and went on to make version 2.
Last Mentorship Meeting and Our Final Idea
We scrapped the idea to make it a mobile app and opted to make it a web portal since it could be used from the browser (while also still being able to be used on the phone). We went to prioritize ease of use and made changes so that the user flow for our main use case (inputting and hiding patient info) was as smooth as possible. Take a sneak peek at the design:
The sponsors thought the idea was better than the last meeting but still had opinions on minor things to change here and there — which we noted and after the meeting included in the final app design. What we had was a fast, easy-to-use web portal design that fulfilled our use cases for the patient data consent system and the requirements of the challenge set.
We crafted a 5-minute video presentation: script, slides, story, everything (I should note it was actually quite a challenge to shove everything within 5 minutes, there were just so many things to cover). Our idea may be a bit rough around the edges and we may be lacking some of the business details but one thing my teammate and I possessed was the ability to be enthusiastic and to talk. It was literally crunch time recording that presentation video, we were already awake for about 26 hours trying to wrap everything up and you could definitely see it on our faces. We put our heart and soul into the design solution and video… and the only thing left to do was to submit.
We won our challenge set. I couldn’t believe it. I literally screamed “lets gooo!” as they announced Team AREN. Although we didn't win first place in the hackathon, winning the challenge set was something I was proud of. Thanks to Seneca for putting this all together, Team AREN will be returning next year bigger and better.