Author: Kenday Sivaram, Lakshmi Priya
Digital technologies like smart wearable trackers, mobile health apps are providing new options for managing healthcare outside of traditional care settings. Though these health-tracking devices are good in presenting physiological health data (quantified data) such as blood pressure, heart rate, blood glucose level, they fall short in integrating perceived wellbeing (qualitative information) like emotions, lifestyle activities and social interactions into their health data for richer contextual information and hence provide limited support for self-reflection and actionable insights to individuals and their care providers. We developed an application called "Healthy Me", to record the individuals' subjective wellbeing data along with their physiological metrics through self-journaling and present the data through exploratory visual charts for making quick sense of the data and to understand whether it initiates reflective understanding of their overall wellbeing. Our qualitative interview with both the patient participants and healthcare professionals revealed that seeing the perceived metrics along with their physiological health data helped them reasoning about their behaviors and made them more self-aware of their health. The feedback from the study also suggests that such approaches provoke more engagement and curiosity among patients around healthier choices and can serve as a good educational tool for health practitioners to converse with their patients.
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Thesis advisor: Bartram, Lyn
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