The Sexual Health Hub
Virgin Care provide free to use NHS health care services across the UK. The brief was to combine their current sexual health clinic websites into a one central hub. This hub includes a medical triage and booking process allowing users to book sexual health appointments online. Virgin Care are the first provider to offer this in the UK, making this a challenging and exciting project to be a part of.
Medical Triage and Appointment Booking
The sexual health hub allows users to book an STI or Contraception appointment online. To make this possible, I had to map out complex user journeys, and try to make these as smooth as possible. This required working closely with medical practitioners from Virgin Care to ensure the correct medical criteria was met. This was routinely weighed against creating a trustworthy user experience. Ultimately Virgin Care needed users to complete a booking, so keeping the process simple (where possible) was key.
Prototype and User Testing
I designed in-depth prototypes for as many routes of the process as possible. There was a lot of design challenges within this, such as educating as part of the process, diverting 'worried-well' users, handling at-risk users and many more. I worked closely with my team lead to test the prototypes with users, and make changes accordingly. This allowed us to improve the prototype and ensure we were delivering a solution that would convert.
A scalable pattern library
The hub includes an online booking tool, clinic finder, educational tools, and many other types of content. It was almost impossible to design for every eventuality, and so designing a large pattern library was a no-brainer. This helped to keep development consistent, and created a language and rule set that could be shared across the team. Below is a small selection from the library.
A mobile first approach
Over 80% of visitors where coming from mobile on the existing clinic sites. This was not surprising considering the nature of the websites, as users would want to browse privately. This lead the team to pursue a mobile first design process that put user trust and sensitivity at its forefront.
Using natural language forms
A key challenge was ensuring smooth user journeys from the homepage to the different areas of the hub. Virgin Care also wanted the homepage to feel more like a reception desk in a clinic. I decided to translate the user's wants into conversations, such as 'How can we help today?' 'I want to find book an appointment near me'. I took this forward and designed a natural selector form using this conversational format.
An information hub
As well as providing a platform for users to find their local clinic or book an appointment, Virgin Care wanted to prevent by educating. They do this by providing information pages with facts and advice about sexual health.
The content of the pages is text heavy, so I took care in crafting a clear design system. At the top of the page there is an area for a 'bitesize takeaway' for each section in the page. This allows users to skim and click/tap to skip down the page to that section. Flexible content repeaters allows users to quickly enter their postcode to book an appointment or find a clinic. These can be placed wherever is needed in the page such as underneath content about getting tested. Having these quick routes in to getting treatment could make a real difference for an anxious person who is worried they might have an STI.