News & Events

Penny Stamps Speaker Series

Sun Young Park

Designing Health Technology to Empower Patients

Friday, March 19, 2021 at 8:00 pm

Sun Young Park

Successful chronic illness management requires active patient participation and effective communication among the patient, caregivers, and clinicians. However, this can be difficult, especially for more vulnerable patients who may lack the self-knowledge, sufficient communication skills, or appropriate information access. Such patients’ needs, in consequence, are often overlooked, and their capacity to understand care information misjudged by providers and caregivers. To support patient empowerment and activation, Sun Young Park’s research focuses on vulnerable individuals with low health literacy and a lack of information access and accessible tools and examines their needs and barriers.

In this talk, Park presents work that investigates opportunities to empower and activate these vulnerable individuals through two case studies: patients in an emergency care setting and pediatric patients with cancer. The results of the studies reveal the details of the adaptation behaviors and experience of patients during an emergency care and pediatric cancer patients, shedding light on a need for redesigning Health IT systems to engage patients, who have not been sufficiently considered and involved in the current system design. In addition, the results point to a need for design considerations to promote and enhance the patients’ positive experiences. This talk will conclude with broader implications for evaluating and designing a socio-technical system in complex healthcare contexts, focusing on the role of HCI/design researchers in this emerging design space.

Sun Young Park, PhD is an assistant professor in Stamps School of Art and Design and the School of Information at the University of Michigan. Her research lies at the intersection of Health Informatics, Human Computer Interaction (HCI), and Computer Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW). In particular, her research focuses on evaluating and designing health information systems and technologies in both the clinical and non-clinical settings. Her studies related to designing health IT systems that support healthcare providers’ information work, focusing on healthcare consumers’ information needs and behaviors in the hospital setting, earned a best paper award from the Journal of International Medical Informatics Association (IMIA), was chosen for the IMIA Yearbook 2013, garnered a finalist nomination for the Diana Forsythe Award from the American Medical Informatics Association (AMIA). Her research projects have been funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) CRII award in 2017, the Agency of Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) grant in 2018, and the NSF CAREER award in 2020. She was inducted into the Inaugural Class of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) Future of Computing Academy in 2017. Park has served on many scientific and technical program committees for top-tier academic conferences, including ACM CHI, CSCW, and DIS.

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