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Service Design (MA)

Elitnisa Solenay

Elitnisa is a Service Designer who holds a BA degree in Industrial Design. Currently, she experiments her hobbies in Ecology and nature's mechanics with further study in the AgriTech degree. 

She is passionate about multi-disciplinary design with technology/science/humanity/nature. In her works, she sees herself as a real-life problem solver & an imaginer of the future with emphatic skills and creative thinking. Picturing research and design methodologies as a shared platform to design channels for people's needs is a step toward a better life for all people, communities, and sectors. 

Hence, studying and working in many design fields, in her discipline, she will continuously pursue to bring shared, creative confidence to all stages of the design process where everyone can be involved in co-creation to get a greater impact on changing environments of innovation.

Her final project aims to create awareness for spinal deformities and to enable services for the people in need within healthcare. 

But what is Scoliosis? Today, 156 million people = 2% of the world population have been affected by Scoliosis. With this percentage, dozens of people around you may be openly or personally coping with this condition. It's a health condition where the spine twists sideways that starts during puberty. There are common treatment methods to stop the curve from getting progressed, but all the treatment methods have an impact and the inherent risk that brings to people, Therefore, early discovery of spinal conditions can be a lifesaver for any young person. 

Here, we worked on a cross-media service YOU a three-step spinal health assessment kit that provides practical self-examination tools and customized navigation to help teens catch scoliosis symptoms early and build a positive attitude towards body posture.

Addressing The Challange
Addressing The Challange

The signs of spinal deformities are easy to hide, causing late diagnosis of Scoliosis. Further, the absence of regular health screenings in the schools and the fragmented healthcare system lacks urgent support, therefore, leaves the patient with a missed opportunity of early diagnosis and timely treatment. Most of the time, diagnosis happens when it is already severe, and the treatment becomes more challenging and less effective. It affects the patient lifelong, both physically and mentally, exposing them to a financially challenging treatment. After hearing the stories of patients and doctors, the insights led us to one important question: How might we raise young people’s awareness of Scoliosis to identify the condition early and build positive attitudes towards body posture?



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The Actions Needs To Be Taken

To achieve awareness, young people first need age-appropriate resources to understand their health closely. Then they can access the tools which provide instant clues of diagnosis and monitor their spinal health accordingly. Enabling the related-use channels for those young people in public has a vital role in engaging with the healthcare services. As well as redesigning the relation between PE teachers and school nurses or reaching to gyms or other support communities can be the mediator of presenting the necessary services and tools to teenagers for sustaining their postural health with the needed support.

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The Solution
The Cross-Media Services
The Cross-Media Services

To disseminate the opportunities of early diagnosis for everyone, we have developed a booklet that comes in three sections: Learn-Measure-Act. The first section introduces us to the fundamentals of spinal health and builds a positive attitude towards body deformities. Section Two contains two DIY tools we uniquely developed for Scoliosis that only come with a printing cost. The tool does this by checking the spine curve and comparing the shoulder level to provide insights into the assessment later. The last section is where the assessment is made and shows postural tips and tailored suggestions for each group. The booklet is available to individuals and mediators (such as schools) via YOU web platform. The web platform also showcases body positivity campaigns to motivate the people who cope with Scoliosis and encourage more teens to be part of the awareness. To do your self-assessment, please follow https://you-project.wixsite.com/you-toolkit


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Presentation
The Insights

Before reaching the final version of the Scoliosis identification tool, we looked at existing tools and iterated 20 different mock-ups with 9 user tests at different scales. All the tests and co-creation activities have shown us how using the cross-media (physical and digital) tools benefits each other when recognized by the public and used for the need for self-diagnostics. Surely, as designers, a part of our mission should be building the foundation of digital diagnostics. But designing inclusively for the most practical and economical way to have self-awareness of spinal health presented us insights into the complexity of ethics and the security of digital diagnostics in the future. Moreover, such physical tools can provide us with new research opportunities by extending these toolkits to different healthcare areas in the future, which will enable many people to build empathy and raise awareness/preventions for many other health conditions starting from young ages.

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YOU Prototype Video — Please view the vide

The lacking engagement of simple healthcare interventions in people's lives puts the opportunities of early diagnosis in danger. Therefore, self-screening in orthopaedics fills a gap that can prevent the problem before it's too late. One feedback we received from the doctor was our service gives a level of assessment that raises awareness hence is vital for the results to be referred to the doctor immediately. Later, a patient mentioned seeing her self-assessment was a reason to get help for her Scoliosis again. This also validates our service aim and proved more screening opportunities to the public are a step towards a healthier life. In the next steps, we are excited to take our service tool to the Acibadem Hospital for further prototyping. With the findings through the journey, we also aim to contribute to the organization that carries out intensive studies on spinal deformities.

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Video