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Part of NHS architecture principles

Put user needs first

Every service must be designed around user needs, whether the needs of the public, clinicians or other staff.

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Summary

Every service must be designed around user needs, whether the needs of the public, clinicians or other staff.


Services designed around users and their needs:
  • are more likely to be used

  • help more people get the right outcome for them – and so achieve their intent

  • cost less to operate by reducing time and money spent on resolving problems


Rationale

This is best practice in the development of digital services.

Inclusivity is a legal requirement dictated by the Equalities Act.

The NHS Long Term Plan specifies the need to improve healthcare offerings for excluded groups, such as patients with learning disabilities and the homeless.


Implication

Digital Services should:
  • comply with all legal requirements, especially around website accessibility

  • undertake user needs analysis as part of the design process

  • ensure user experience (UX) design principles are followed

  • demonstrate that the architecture supports a range of user interactions - digital, paper, phone, for example

This can be demonstrated through documented user journeys.

Digital services should be developed in such a way to separate user content from the method of presentation, otherwise know as progressive enhancement.

 This will ensure: 

  • services are more resilient

  • the service’s most basic functionality will work and meet the core needs of its users 

  • improved accessibility by encouraging best practices like writing semantic mark-up

  • users with device or connectivity limitations can use the service

Last edited: 2 November 2020 3:44 pm