Overcoming Challenges to Inclusive User-based Testing of Health Information Technology with Vulnerable Older Adults: Recommendations from a Human Factors Engineering Expert Inquiry

Linda W Peute, Gaby-Anne Wildenbos, Thomas Engelsma, Blake J Lesselroth, Valentina Lichtner, Helen Monkman, David Neal, Lex Van Velsen, Monique W Jaspers, Romaric Marcilly

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

OBJECTIVES: Involving representative users in usability testing of health information technology (HIT) is central to user-centered design. However, (vulnerable) older adults as representative users have unique requirements. Aging processes may affect physical capabilities and cognitive skills, which can hamper testing with this demographic and may require special attention and revised protocols. This study was performed to provide expert-based recommendations for HIT user-testing with (vulnerable) older adults to support inclusive HIT design and evaluation.

METHODS: First, we conducted a structured workshop with ten experts in HIT implementation and research, recruited through purposeful sampling, to generate insights into how characteristics of older adults may influence user-testing. Next, five Human Factor researchers experienced in HIT user-testing with (vulnerable) older adults validated the results and provided additional textual insights to gain consensus on the most important recommendations. A thematic analysis was performed on the resulting inquiries. Applied codes were based on the User-Centered Design framework.

RESULTS: The analysis resulted in nine recommendations for user-testing of HIT with older adults, divided into three main themes: (1) empathetic approach and trust-building, (2) new requirements for testing and study design, and (3) adjustments to usability evaluation methods. For each theme a checklist of relevant items to follow-up on the recommendation is provided.

CONCLUSIONS: The recommendations generated through expert inquiry contribute to more effective usability testing of HIT with older adults. This provides an important step towards improved accessibility of HIT amongst older adults through inclusive user-centered design.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)74-81
Number of pages8
JournalYearbook of Medical Informatics
Volume31
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2022

Keywords

  • Humans
  • Aged
  • Medical Informatics
  • Ergonomics

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Overcoming Challenges to Inclusive User-based Testing of Health Information Technology with Vulnerable Older Adults: Recommendations from a Human Factors Engineering Expert Inquiry'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this