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Anaesthesia. 2012 Sep;67(9):957-67. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2044.2012.07196.x.

Usability testing of a prototype Phone Oximeter with healthcare providers in high- and low-medical resource environments.

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Department of Anaesthesiology, Pharmacology, and Therapeutics, University of British Columbia, British Columbia Children's Hospital, Vancouver, Canada.


To increase the use of pulse oximetry by capitalise on the wide availability of mobile phones, we have designed, developed and evaluated a prototype pulse oximeter interfaced to a mobile phone. Usability of this Phone Oximeter was tested as part of a rapid prototyping process. Phase 1 of the study (20 subjects) was performed in Canada. Users performed 23 tasks, while thinking aloud. Time for completion of tasks and analysis of user response to a mobile phone usability questionnaire were used to evaluate usability. Five interface improvements were made to the prototype before evaluation in Phase 2 (15 subjects) in Uganda. The lack of previous pulse oximetry experience and mobile phone use increased median (IQR [range]) time taken to perform tasks from 219 (160-247 [118-274]) s in Phase 1 to 228 (151-501 [111-2661]) s in Phase 2. User feedback was positive and overall usability high (Phase 1--82%, Phase 2--78%).

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