Warm Hands at Home

Warm Hands At Home is a concept telemedicine service which allows COPD sufferers to monitor themselves and keep a diary of their daily life. It allows them to share that information with doctors, carers, friends and family. Warm Hands is a service built upon the existing telemedicine system. It introduces a new role between patient and health services, which provides care and support on a daily basis.

Warm Hands also allows sufferers to build their own care network by sharing their information and helping each other. Warm Hands is aimed at keeping people at early stages of care. This is beneficial to them because they stay healthier and happier, and also for the system which can prevent more intensive, and expensive care in hospitals.

This concept was developed after a 5 week course in service design, working with researchers in Frederiksberg Hospital, Copenhagen.

Starting Point: User Ressearch

We attended lectures by COPD and telemedicine specialists as well as interviewed sufferers in their homes. We learned about the hospital system, the intent of the telemedicine device, everyday life of a COPD sufferer and the medical details of the disease. Initial user research was done by meeting COPD patients, talking to pulmonary doctors, nurses and family members.

Service Design course @ CIID
5 weeks
Simona Maschi (CIID),
Brian Rink (IDEO)
Mimi Son, Kevin Cannon, Ujjval Panchal & Nina Christoffersen
User research, concept generation, video editing, minor acting part.
We conducted a series of interviews with COPD sufferers
at a gym
We also did empathy exercises by meeting patients at exercise classes
Meeting a nurse from Frederiksberg Hospital who is conducting telemedicine trials
This was a team project, so collating our research during this process was key

User Insights

From this initial research we gained some key insights into COPD sufferers:

“I can never tell if it is going to be a good or a bad day.”

We found that the disease creates a feeling of uncertainty since the disease is so unpredictable.

“I have lots of energy in my mind but not in my body.”

This insight showed us that sufferers want to be active but need to budget how to spend the energy they have.

“It can take weeks to get over being sick. You need to use all your energy on getting better! You don’t think about getting food.”

This showed us that when COPD sufferers get sick, they get very sick. They do not have energy to do practical chores - even chores as crucial as getting food or even asking someone to do the shopping for them.

“I hate doing exercise but I want to have the best life possible. It helps when I am meeting people - that makes it easier to actually go to the gym!”

Exercise is one of the best ways of stabilising the illness - it is difficult getting to the location and doing the work - but meeting up with others is a crucial motivation factor. "

“We keep an eye on each other -- that feels nice - especially when being single.”

Many COPD sufferers do not have a spouse, and as such they rely heavily on their friendships, often with other COPD patients who can emphathise with their situation.

Concept Generation

Based on this research, we generated concepts and thrashed out lots of ideas. We worked with teams in Fredreksberg Hospital who are working on tele-medicine trials.

Concept Generation

Video Prototype

We made a quick video of our first concept to get feedback from faculty, staff and COPD sufferers.

Making a Video

Below is the first rough video prototype that we did. This was used to get feedback from doctors and nurses and Fredreksberg Hospital, faculty and CPOD patients.

Experience Prototyping

Once we had this concept, we decided to test our assumptions with an experience prototype. We set up a video chat between a nurse and a patient, and asked the patent to keep a diary of her activities over a few days. We observed this experience from both ends and these discussions helped refine our concept.

Experience Prototyping with a nurse and patient


Based on this feedback from our experience prototyping, we developed the final concept that you saw in the initial video. Here is a photo of the final mockup of the physical diary as well as a diagram illustrating other parts of our service.

If you haven't seen it already, please check out the final concept video at the top of this page to see how it all fits together.

Final prototype

Final prototype