msHelse: a Self-Management Mobile Application for Persons with Multiple Sclerosis
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This master thesis presents the msHelse application for patient self-management within the field of Multiple Sclerosis (MS). This Design Science research project went through a user-centred design process that included nine persons with MS and two medical experts from the Norwegian competence centre of MS at the Haukeland University Hospital, Bergen. The development was comprised of four design iterations from low- to high-fidelity prototypes. Resulting are four main modules; Mobile diary, Summary statistics module, Stress management module and a To-do list. Through these functionalities users are supported to monitor the course of the disease, to gain knowledge about the disease dynamics and to make adjustments to their lifestyle. Useful in the development were suggestions from the users and medical experts. For example, the persons with MS suggested that the application should be personalised and automated to simplify data registration into the Mobile diary. The medical staff believed that a patient – physician consultation would benefit from using the collected data. Both the persons with MS and the medical experts have expressed their positive attitude throughout the development and evaluation, which resulted in high System Usability Scores. The outcome of the usability testing with the ten IT experts was encouraging as well and they suggested that it would be a good idea to implement a user guide for new users and improve in the navigation to enhance the user experience. The results have suggested that there is a place for IT based tools to support patient self-management, even as a part of the patient routine care. The future development would include testing the application in clinical trials to understand clinical outcomes for users. It would also be important to integrate the msHelse application with the Norwegian healthcare system in order to combine patient entered data with the rest of the patient record.