The Brain self portrait

Paul Meulendijks

Paul designed an avatar-based puzzle concept to help child patients understand and participate in their clinical tests and test results.

In many hospitals, child patients are not involved in their clinical tests and test results in a child-friendly way. This can lead to a lack of understanding of parent-doctor discussions, a lack of opportunities to express their own needs and opinions, and anxiety about if, how and why clinical tests are being done. This project focuses specifically on children undergoing clinical trials at the Child Brain Lab (CBL).

The work began with a contextual analysis of the children’s healthcare system. This included reviewing literature, observing consultations and interviewing a range of healthcare professionals and child patients. These findings were then translated into design drivers that inspired several iterations of design ideas. These ideas were used to learn from by discussing them with all the key stakeholders in this project. This led to a second iteration of design drivers, ultimately resulting in the Brain Puzzle concept.

The Brain Puzzle concept is a collection of avatar-based, personalised puzzle pieces that the child patient collects as they progress through the CBL. Each piece has a different function and serves a different stage. The first type of piece represents the sequence of tests that will be carried out, while the second type represents the brain functions that these tests will examine. Before the consultation, the child patients are given an indication of their results in the form of stickers that can be placed on the appropriate puzzle piece. These stickers allow both doctors and children to indicate what they want to discuss. Children can digitally scan their puzzle pieces to explore more content.

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