R01 OXD Website Case Study PHSA Hero @2x V02 KB

Technology improvements lead to better health management of vaccine records

People in British Columbia now have an easier way to track their immunizations, thanks to design enhancements made with the help of OXD.

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In preparation for COVID-19 vaccine roll-outs during the pandemic, Provincial Health Services Authority (PHSA) of British Columbia (BC) started plans to develop an online tool to support vaccine record submissions. Residents needed the ability to upload confirmation of their COVID-19 vaccines, whether administered in BC or outside of the province. This tool was an important ally in the Provincial COVID-19 vaccination plan. Its success revealed the need to expand the service beyond COVID-19. OXD worked with PHSA to redesign the existing digital tool to include the upload and tracking of any vaccine they'd received—not just COVID 19. This expanded feature means people in BC can better manage their health records while improving efficiency and accuracy for health care workers.

PHSA had internal teams responsible for establishing business requirements and doing the development for the expansion of the online service, but they needed external support for user experience. Since OXD had worked with PHSA previously on the design of a system to support medical staff in delivering COVID vaccinations throughout BC, they knew we could help them find the right solutions for the vaccine record submission expansion.

Working alongside PHSA's internal teams and the Government Digital Experience (GDX) Content Design team, we were able to design user-centred wireframes and test usability with users of the existing tool.

Screenshot of the PHSA vaccine submission website page on a black simplified monitor and to the right a black simplified cell phone, over a purple background to support health management technology improvements
Screens showing the submission form and process to submit or update a vaccine record

Working together across teams leads to a better digital experience for everyone.

Working collaboratively, and in a tailored agile process with the PHSA team, we developed new user flows based on all possible scenarios vaccinated people might take. We spoke with their data experts and business analysts to make the form fields easier to understand. We also matched what the people submitting vaccination records and health information system managers needed. We worked with the GDX team to make sure the updated tool looked the same on government websites in terms of content and design.

1. Review the existing flow

We diagrammed the current screen flows that were being used to upload people’s COVID-19 vaccine records to find out which areas would need improvement or what new features should be added.

2. Map out the revised flow

We used the existing flow with PHSA's requirements to make the new screen flows for all other immunization types.

3. Have the PHSA team review the flow

At our stand-ups, we discussed each flow with the PHSA team and made changes based on their suggestions. Working closely with their technical team and health information system managers helped us quickly finish the updated user journey.

4. Wireframe the flow

We used the existing BC government design system to create high-fidelity wireframes.

5. Test the wireframes

We tested the existing vaccine submission tool with real users. We ran five usability testing sessions with clickable wireframes. The feedback from users helped us find any problems with the flow, content design, and features of the wireframe.

6. Update the wireframes

We used the feedback we received from our usability testing sessions to update the next version of the wireframe.

7. Review the wireframes with stakeholders outside of PHSA

We communicated with external teams including the Ministry of Health, Health Gateway, and GDX to review the content and align on the wireframe design. This ensured we were consistent with other government touchpoints, including the gov.bc.ca website.

8. Hand-over to developers

After completing all of the steps, we delivered the high-fidelity wireframes to the PHSA team of developers to begin building.

Our work with PHSA and GDX shows what’s possible when you co-create across internal teams. The PHSA team received fully functional wireframes that solve problems for users, while acting as a roadmap to help their developers get a head-start on making the application more robust.

Screenshot of the PHSA vaccine submission website page on a black simplified monitor over a purple background to support health management technology improvements
Screen showing website confirmation of a user's vaccine submission

Management of health records through improved technology provides a better user experience.

The improved digital service means people in BC can now use Health Gateway to see their immunizations from the Provincial Immunization Registry. If any of their immunizations are missing or need updating, they can use the online tool. After being reviewed by a healthcare professional, their record gets updated and the changes show up in Health Gateway.

The additional vaccine schedule feature also shows users recommended immunizations based on their age and risk factors. This helps people understand their vaccination documentation and figure out if they’ve missed any vaccines.

With vaccine records available online and in one central location, people living in BC can more easily and securely manage important health services through improved technology. We continue to support PHSA with enhancement requests to continue improving the digital experience.

Interested in learning more about how mapping can help solve complex challenges?

Learn more about the mapping methods we used to support COVID-19 vaccination clinics for the Provincial Health Services Authority by watching our Solving Complex Problems with Mapping webinar.