healthcare design challenges

Healthcare User Experience Design Challenges: How to Solve?

Design, Product
10 min
Mar 16, 2023

Medtech systems are becoming more popular among healthcare practitioners all over the world. With digital resources, medical professionals can improve their ability to diagnose and treat patients and keep more accurate records. As a result, this helps reduce the likelihood of potentially devastating medical errors.

Therefore, UX in healthcare has received a lot of focus in recent years. The need for UX/UI designers in the healthcare and medical technology industries continues to rise. Yet, despite the synergistic potential, the integration of UX and healthcare is still incomplete. Bridging the gap between user experience and digital health will become more critical in providing high-quality diagnosis and treatment.

In this piece, we’ll examine some of the most pressing healthcare UX issues. First, however, let’s go further into why UX is so crucial in the healthcare industry.

The importance of UX design in healthcare

ux in healthcare

UX should be a top priority for any company developing a digital presence, but the consequences of ignoring it may be more severe for healthcare providers. As consumers often face sensitive circumstances in healthcare, healthcare providers aim to design all digital solutions with ease of use in mind. Customers want easy-to-use tools while seeking medical care or preserving their health.

In addition, 70% of doctors are showing signs of burnout due to HIT-related stress. It’s the stress healthcare workers suffer as a result of using health information technology (HIT) systems, such as electronic health records (EHRs) or clinical decision support systems. The use and rollout of HIT technologies may be stressful due to factors including more work and problems navigating complex systems. The necessity for ongoing technological adaptation is an additional variable that might contribute to HIT-related stress.

UX design can help simplify the interface of HIT systems, making them simpler to use and straightforward, thereby decreasing the cognitive strain on healthcare practitioners. Moreover, feedback from healthcare experts can help UX designers pinpoint problems and develop effective solutions.

Finally, efficient healthcare UX design can assist doctors in saving time and effort while decreasing the likelihood of making errors. However, creating useful products for the ever-changing digital healthcare sector might be difficult. Let’s discuss some of the biggest challenges healthcare providers encounter in this area.

The main healthcare UX challenges

While creating digital solutions for patients and healthcare workers, healthcare companies need help with UX design. Some of the more important ones are as follows.

healthcare UX challenges

1. Complex workflows

From patient intake through discharge, the healthcare business encompasses various complicated workflows, each with its own needs, rules, and stakeholders. One of the biggest challenges for UX designers is to implement these intricate processes in digital systems while keeping the interfaces simple and intuitive.

For example, EHRs must be flexible enough to enable a wide range of clinical processes, from taking a patient’s medical history to writing a prescription and documenting a treatment plan.

Fortunately, experienced UX/UI designers can address this challenge. They can research to learn more about healthcare providers’ and patients’ daily routines and how they utilize a particular system and then design a user-friendly interface that reduces the cognitive workload.

2. Intuitive interfaces

Users may be unfamiliar with the numerous underlying processes incorporated into a solution. UX designers working on complicated healthcare systems should take this into account. This points out the value of putting the user’s needs first when designing interfaces.

Patients don’t want to waste time navigating through confusing lists, catalogs, and files. Excessive interactions may lead to dissatisfaction and an unpleasant user experience in healthcare, while a deluge of unclear or unneeded features may lead to confusion and disorientation. Designers should prioritize creating a frictionless experience for users to avoid these sorts of issues.

3. Regulatory compliance

Healthcare designers should give special attention to HIPAA (the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act). Every digital solution that gathers or keeps patient health information must adhere to HIPAA’s stringent privacy and security rules. Therefore, designers must ensure their interfaces have the right security features, like password protection, two-factor authentication, and encryption.

In addition to HIPAA, UX designers must take into account GDPR (the General Data Protection Regulation) restrictions, which control the acquisition and use of personal data in the European Union. Designers need to make sure that their healthcare product design follows these rules. For example, they need to get permission from patients before collecting and using their information.

4. Accessibility

The healthcare sector serves a wide spectrum of patients, either with physical or cognitive limitations that make accessing and using digital healthcare services difficult.

This necessitates the development of intuitive interfaces for users of varying ages, literacy levels, and cognitive capacities. Designers can, for example, use clear and concise language, give visual cues for navigation and functioning, and ensure the interface is readily navigable using a keyboard or assistive technology, like screen readers or speech recognition software.

Designers also need to think about the varying requirements of individual patients. Older patients, for example, may struggle with tiny fonts or complicated interfaces, while patients with visual impairments may need an enlarged app screen.

5. Data visualization

The healthcare industry produces vast amounts of data. So UX designers have a difficult problem in creating data representations, understandable to persons without medical training.

To overcome this obstacle, designers should consider the unique requirements of various user groups and create interfaces that convey data clearly and intuitively. There are a number of ways to simplify the presentation of complex information for the intended audience: charts, graphs, and other visual components. Designers can also use line graphs to depict the evolution of patient health indicators over time. Besides, they can use pie charts to show the distribution of patients suffering from various illnesses.

6. Designing with care

Healthcare is a sector that may provoke strong emotional responses from patients and their families, making emotional sensitivity a critical factor in UX design. The presentation of distressing health information requires polite and caring user interfaces.

To overcome this obstacle, designers must consider how their work would make users feel emotionally and build interfaces that put people first. Thus, designers should use a combination of plain and unambiguous language and consider patients’ emotional conditions. For instance, they can use comforting and reassuring language while eschewing medical jargon and other phrases that might be off-putting to patients.

Designers should also take into account the varying psychological requirements of their target populations. Patients with chronic illnesses or those about to undergo surgery will have a particular need for psychological support.


Digital technology and UX design are gaining popularity in the healthcare sector, providing advantages such as accurate medical records, better diagnosis, and decreased medical mistakes. However, digitalization presents multiple obstacles. The main problems include complex processes, user-friendly interfaces, regulatory compliance, accessibility, data visualization, and emotional sensitivity.

Fortunately, we have experienced designers who can easily tackle these healthcare UX challenges while keeping their customers happy.

The benefits of our healthcare UX design agency

Uitop is a dynamic and skilled UI/UX design team that helps startups and established businesses transform their concepts into interfaces that soar to new heights!

We specialize in medical UX design and know all the ins and outs of creating user-friendly interfaces for both patients and healthcare professionals. Uitop combines creativity with strategy to help healthcare providers deliver high-quality patient carets. Whether you need to start from scratch or redesign your existing solution, we’re always at your disposal.

by Ivan Klyzhenko
UX Startup Advisor, Uitop


What’s the importance of UX design in healthcare?

UX design is critical in healthcare since it substantially influences patient outcomes and satisfaction. Digital solutions created with usability and accessibility in mind can enhance the quality of treatment and prevent medical mistakes. Moreover, UX design can assist healthcare practitioners by simplifying processes and reducing stress, enabling them to better care for their patients.

What are the main healthcare UX design challenges?

UX design in healthcare poses various problems, including complicated workflows, regulatory compliance, accessibility, emotional sensitivity, and data visualization. Designers also need to remember that healthcare customers are often in vulnerable situations. Therefore, digital solutions need to be easy to use. UX designers should also strike a balance between technical needs and user experience to produce digital solutions that enhance healthcare outcomes.

What advantages can UX design bring to the healthcare sector?

UX design can assist the healthcare industry in a variety of ways, including better patient experiences, fewer medical mistakes, higher efficiency, and improved communication between patients and healthcare professionals. The right UX/UI design can simplify technical operations and make healthcare services more accessible to all patients, regardless of physical or cognitive limitations. Moreover, UX design can help healthcare practitioners meet regulatory standards and ensure the security of patient data.

How can UX designers incorporate patient feedback into their healthcare designs?

UX designers can include patient feedback in their healthcare designs at each step of the design process. They can perform user research and usability testing on prototypes to gain feedback and find areas for improvement. Moreover, designers can utilize patient feedback to create personas and scenarios, ensuring their designs fit the unique requirements and preferences of their target consumers.

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