Heart disease is the biggest cause of death around the world, but making some simple lifestyle changes can help to reduce your risk.

03 good health and wellbeing S Our impact

Working in partnership with Brighton and Sussex Medical School, we developed a digital product that allows people to explore their lifestyle and how it impacts key heart disease risk factors.

The website takes people through a quick heart health questionnaire to determine their risk of heart disease.

They then have the opportunity to answer a longer diet and exercise questionnaire to get feedback on how their lifestyle affects their heart health.

To reduce the organisational risk and deliver a functioning product within scope and budget, no personal data is captured within the tool.

With this in mind, at each stage of the process people have the opportunity to email themselves a copy of their results and feedback for safekeeping.

This compromise, co-designed with the audience, allowed an effective user journey, without adding additional budget or risk to the project.

healthyheartsproject.co.uk

Prototyping

Given the complexity of the product, we prototyped the entire journey using interactive wireframes.

This allowed us to stress test assumptions we were making in the project team with real users in a range of different contexts.

For example, this testing allowed us to make the case for evolving much of the academic language that was originally included in the content.

The name of the study was even simplified from ‘SPICES’ (Scaling-up Packages of Interventions for Cardiovascular disease prevention in selected sites in Europe and Sub-Saharan Africa) to the ‘Healthy Hearts Project’.

Tell people what to expect up front

Throughout our work we look to help people understand exactly what they will need to complete the tasks ahead of them.

How many questions there are, how long it’s likely to take and any additional requirements (such as a tape measure) all help to build user’s confidence in the experience.

Easy to use questions

When faced with a large number of questions, people need plain language and intuitive design to help them finish the task.

Buttons or sliders that are easy to tap when using a tablet are just one way that we can help with this.

Always ensuring there is a simple way to navigate back to the previous screen is another.

Complicated information, simply visualised

After completing a series of questions, participants are given a simple visualisation to show their overall score.

This was designed to be purposefully top line, with more information available to users that wanted it. The overriding message was to explore what steps people should take to reduce their risk.

While the red-to-green ‘traffic light’ system was already inherit to the SPICES project, we added emoji faces to improve accessibility for visually-impaired users.

Setting achievable goals

Having invested a significant amount of time answering questions, it’s essential that people are given the opportunity to improve their outcomes.

By ensuring the entire goal-setting experience feels achievable, we are increasing the likelihood that people will actually make changes to their lives.

Simple steps such as allowing them to see the impact of their lifestyle changes have significantly improved the completion rate.