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Development and Usability Testing of a Web-based COVID-19 Self-triage Platform.
West J Emerg Med. 2020 Aug 19; 21(5):1054-1058.WJ

Abstract

INTRODUCTION

The development and deployment of a web-based, self-triage tool for severe respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (COVID-19 disease) aimed at preventing surges in healthcare utilization could provide easily understandable health guidance with the goal of mitigating unnecessary emergency department (ED) and healthcare visits. We describe the iterative development and usability testing of such a tool. We hypothesized that adult users could understand and recall the recommendations provided by a COVID-19 web-based, self-triage tool.

METHODS

We convened a multidisciplinary panel of medical experts at two academic medical schools in an iterative redesign process of a previously validated web-based, epidemic screening tool for the current COVID-19 pandemic. We then conducted a cross-sectional usability study over a 24-hour period among faculty, staff, and students at the two participating universities. Participants were randomly assigned a pre-written health script to enter into the self-triage website for testing. The primary outcome was immediate recall of website recommendations. Secondary outcomes included usability measures. We stratified outcomes by demographic characteristics.

RESULTS

A final sample of 877 participants (mean age, 32 years [range, 19-84 years]; 65.3% female) was used in the analysis. We found that 79.4% of the participants accurately recalled the recommendations provided by the website. Almost all participants (96.9%) found the website easy to use and navigate.

CONCLUSION

Adult users of a COVID-19 self-triage website, recruited from an academic setting, were able to successfully recall self-care instructions from the website and found it user-friendly. This website appears to be a feasible way to provide evidence-based health guidance to adult patients during a pandemic. Website guidance could be used to reduce unnecessary ED and healthcare visits.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Emory University School of Medicine, Department of Emergency Medicine, Atlanta, Georgia.National Center for Disaster Medicine and Public Health, Department, Bethesda, Maryland.Emory University School of Medicine, Department of Emergency Medicine, Atlanta, Georgia.Emory University School of Medicine, Department of Emergency Medicine, Atlanta, Georgia.Emory University School of Medicine, Department of Emergency Medicine, Atlanta, Georgia.Rollins School of Public Health, Department of Health Policy and Management, Atlanta, Georgia.Emory University School of Medicine, Department of Emergency Medicine, Atlanta, Georgia.Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Department of Military and Emergency Medicine, Bethesda, Maryland.

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article
Randomized Controlled Trial

Language

eng

PubMed ID

32970554

Citation

Schrager, Justin D., et al. "Development and Usability Testing of a Web-based COVID-19 Self-triage Platform." The Western Journal of Emergency Medicine, vol. 21, no. 5, 2020, pp. 1054-1058.
Schrager JD, Schuler K, Isakov AP, et al. Development and Usability Testing of a Web-based COVID-19 Self-triage Platform. West J Emerg Med. 2020;21(5):1054-1058.
Schrager, J. D., Schuler, K., Isakov, A. P., Wright, D. W., Yaffee, A. Q., Jacobson, K. L., Parker, R. M., & Goolsby, C. (2020). Development and Usability Testing of a Web-based COVID-19 Self-triage Platform. The Western Journal of Emergency Medicine, 21(5), 1054-1058. https://doi.org/10.5811/westjem.2020.7.48217
Schrager JD, et al. Development and Usability Testing of a Web-based COVID-19 Self-triage Platform. West J Emerg Med. 2020 Aug 19;21(5):1054-1058. PubMed PMID: 32970554.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Development and Usability Testing of a Web-based COVID-19 Self-triage Platform. AU - Schrager,Justin D, AU - Schuler,Keke, AU - Isakov,Alexander P, AU - Wright,David W, AU - Yaffee,Anna Q, AU - Jacobson,Kara L, AU - Parker,Ruth M, AU - Goolsby,Craig, Y1 - 2020/08/19/ PY - 2020/05/15/received PY - 2020/07/24/accepted PY - 2020/9/24/entrez PY - 2020/9/25/pubmed PY - 2020/10/3/medline SP - 1054 EP - 1058 JF - The western journal of emergency medicine JO - West J Emerg Med VL - 21 IS - 5 N2 - INTRODUCTION: The development and deployment of a web-based, self-triage tool for severe respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (COVID-19 disease) aimed at preventing surges in healthcare utilization could provide easily understandable health guidance with the goal of mitigating unnecessary emergency department (ED) and healthcare visits. We describe the iterative development and usability testing of such a tool. We hypothesized that adult users could understand and recall the recommendations provided by a COVID-19 web-based, self-triage tool. METHODS: We convened a multidisciplinary panel of medical experts at two academic medical schools in an iterative redesign process of a previously validated web-based, epidemic screening tool for the current COVID-19 pandemic. We then conducted a cross-sectional usability study over a 24-hour period among faculty, staff, and students at the two participating universities. Participants were randomly assigned a pre-written health script to enter into the self-triage website for testing. The primary outcome was immediate recall of website recommendations. Secondary outcomes included usability measures. We stratified outcomes by demographic characteristics. RESULTS: A final sample of 877 participants (mean age, 32 years [range, 19-84 years]; 65.3% female) was used in the analysis. We found that 79.4% of the participants accurately recalled the recommendations provided by the website. Almost all participants (96.9%) found the website easy to use and navigate. CONCLUSION: Adult users of a COVID-19 self-triage website, recruited from an academic setting, were able to successfully recall self-care instructions from the website and found it user-friendly. This website appears to be a feasible way to provide evidence-based health guidance to adult patients during a pandemic. Website guidance could be used to reduce unnecessary ED and healthcare visits. SN - 1936-9018 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/32970554/Development_and_Usability_Testing_of_a_Web_based_COVID_19_Self_triage_Platform_ L2 - https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/pmid/32970554/ DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -