At NextGen Healthcare, we talk a lot about usability. Does the workflow make sense for the user? This question – and its implications – shapes our development process. Recently, I chatted with Jordan Sinclair of Mirth (our sister company). He’s the lead designer on NextGen Go™, our new iOS app, due for release for iPad® this fall. Jordan is an expert in human-centered design – a process that starts with the person for whom you’re designing, and ends with a new solution. Makes sense, right?
“Secret” design and prototype development
“In the beginning, it was a cool, underground, secret project. We had 90 business days to come up with a design and a prototype that we would put in the doctor’s hand,” says Sinclair, of the NextGen Go product trajectory. Initially, Jordan worked on the research and development of this prototype with his intern Shibani Dhume, and Peter Ladesma, an iOS developer. Now, the iOS team is around 20 people, including those on the NextGen Healthcare side who are working to ensure that NextGen Go integrates with the NextGen® Ambulatory EHR.
Getting inside the mind of the user
“For the initial iteration of NextGen Go, we wanted to focus on high-volume practices that need to be agile, quick, and want a consistent workflow. To get inside the mind of the user, we collaborated with a NextGen® client – Newport Orthopaedics. We went on site and examined workflows to see how doctors work,” explains Jordan. While NextGen Go™ will support practices with workflows similar to the orthopedic practice at the outset, development will continue in order to improve and expand the product.
What does the app offer?
Sinclair explains, “The app is going to support the work that users actually do in the clinic – not what an IT administrator tells us they do. When they are in the office they need to see patients, they need to review data, place orders, communicate with staff, and document what occurred during patient visits. Our goal was to get them away from their workstations so they could better engage with patients.”
Stay tuned for release details
We will keep you up-to-date about NextGen Go as the fall release date approaches. In the meantime, Jordan and his team will continue to work on helping patients get the most attention and best care from their providers.