• Vinehealth

Patient Advisor: Aurora

At Vinehealth, our users have always been in the centre of the app development process. Before the launch of the app, we ran thorough foundational research in order to understand how our service can help people suffering from cancer. After the launch, our research activities changed to diary and usability studies, surveys, focus groups and feedback sessions which helped us to validate the app's features.


In this post, please meet Aurora, our very first patient advisor, who has continuously participated in user research since pre-launch, and helped with the development and improvement of the app's features.


Aurora's Patient Advisor profile

  • Been helping with user research since September 2019

  • Face to face user research activities: 5 interviews and usability testing sessions

  • Other user research activities: 1 diary study; 10+ surveys, email feature testing and feedback sessions; countless bug reports

  • Features worked on: Overall usability of the app, Adding medications into the app, Managing cycles, Logging multiple medications, Pain tracking in the app, Feeling tracking in the app, Chatbot functionality, etc.

Aurora's feedback on improving tracking engagements


When we worked on helping our users to keep on track of their symptoms and well-being, we asked Aurora about her experience, and what would she find helpful. She shared some ideas around personalisation and tailoring the app to each user individually:


"I want the app to analyse what I do and show me things that are most relevant to me and to the activities that I have done...

You could add a little of "gamification" to the app. For example, if I have reported in the past some activities (e.g. yoga) and I am no longer reporting them, why not asking: "Aurora, you are no longer interested in yoga?", as it may help me go back to it... "


After receiving this feedback alongside with other users' feedback, we introduced a component that asked patients about the symptoms they logged on their previous visit. Such personalisation helped users to quickly log most relevant things almost effortlessly, which overall increased symptom logging by 30% in our weekly active users!

Aurora's feedback on pain tracking


In the same feedback session, Aurora shared what can be done to improve usefulness and usability of pain tracking in the app:


"I would like to have a better description for pain. If I get chest pain, for example, it would be nice to be able to specify which areas of the chest hurt and how much. You could even present the contour of a body with different areas and select those affected with different degrees of pain (with a scale)... I would love to be able to keep track of these pain areas to get like a heat map by the end of the week."


Such thorough description helped us to build designs and validate them with Aurora and other users:

  • "I love the pain log! Exactly what i had in mind!".

  • "Brilliant, I like it, that's much better this way... It's useful for me to put in the different types of pains, not just for the cancer, but also for rheumatology, so when I see my doctor I can say which problem I've had."


Overall thoughts

"I learnt about Vinehealth right when I had finished my active treatment in September 2019.


I read in a business magazine that Vinehealth had been selected for a Google incubator and I reached the co-founder Rayna Patel through LinkedIn. Having worked myself as product manager for another start-up, I had tons of suggestions of features that would have made my cancer journey easier.


I remember I had a first meeting with Jack, one the first Vinehealth team members and I literally bombarded him with my ideas. I just wanted Vinehealth to bring them to reality! I even brought my "cancer" black notebook where I had kept track of all my treatment (drugs, symptoms, appointments, notes, etc) so he could understand better all the data that could be helpful to track.


Later on, I interacted with Anastasiia and Serena, to work together in the "pain map", scales for emotions, medications log, etc...


I can only say that Vinehealth people are as considerate and nice as good is their product!."


Becoming a Patient Advisor

Would you like your ideas to be heard? Get in touch by contacting us here, mentioning "Patient Advisor" in the email title.