Designing for a better blood donor experience
Meet Adelin Gashi – DOGA Newcomer of The Year
Meet Adelin Gashi – DOGA Newcomer of The Year
Compassionate, caring, and genuine. Adelin Gashi is one of those designers that was cut out to do what he does – designing for people. Together with his study partner Kevin Ehrenberg, he won ‘Newcomer of the Year’ at DOGA for their project ‘Heart to Heart, an app for facilitating and encouraging blood donation. We met him for an interview to hear more about the project and his thoughts on health care innovation.
Adelin, you’ve won ‘Newcomer of the year’ from DOGA! That’s fantastic! How does it feel? Can you tell us about the project that you won with?
“Thank you! Yes, it feels pretty amazing. There were so many talented people that applied, so both my partner and I are really excited and proud. It’s a recognition for the work that we’ve done. I’m also happy that the award helps spotlight this important topic – getting more people to become blood donors. The project itself was created as part of our service and interaction diploma. It explores how design can improve different aspects of blood donation in Norway, focusing on the Oslo Blood Bank and the Red Cross Blood program.The design proposal that we came up with, we believe, can provide both more donors and also give existing ones a better experience.”
You’ve mentioned that in your design proposal, you want to shift the focus towards the future. What does that mean?
“The system as it is right now is being digitalized. It’s on its way to where it should be, but the system is heavy and rigid and hard to change in a short period of time. So there is a lot of change that needs to happen. What we propose is not revolutionary in any way. But we’re trying to create a product and a service that doesn’t only solve the immediate problem, but also directs the service into the future and opens up new possibilities.”
"We’re trying to create a product and a service that doesn’t only solve the immediate problem, but also directs the service into the future and opens up new possibilities."Adelin Gashi, Digital Designer, EGGS Design
What is the design proposal that you’ve created?
"What we’re proposing is a new system that facilitates a more seamless and meaningful blood donor experience. We show how a new app could serve as a red thread throughout the user experience. From becoming a donor, being an active donor, ending the journey and all the way to possibly starting to give blood again. The app allows you to get an overview of your donor journey, see an illustrated timeline, an appointment section, information about quarantine rules and booking of appointments. Everything that the donor needs is there in the app. It keeps you updated on how well you’re doing and makes it easy to invite friends to become blood donors via the app."
Getting more people to donate blood is, of course, a significant challenge in healthcare. What other challenges do you see in the healthcare sector in Norway?
“There are many challenges. As a designer, I would say that one of the main challenges is that the system itself is complicated. It focuses on procurement processes rather than development. That sets the stage for how innovation is viewed in the health sector. It’s project-based with external consultants, which is excellent but to succeed, you also need to build competence in-house. If not, you create and buy one-time buy solutions that quickly get outdated. You need to have the capacity constantly improve and innovate. However, that requires much investment, of course. In addition, you have other things to consider - things like data security and patient security, for example. You need to ensure that this is not infringed in the process of innovation and digital transformation.
And what opportunities do you see in the health care sector?
“I think there’s a great opportunity to shift the focus. If innovation is done right, we can focus less on limitations and more on possibilities. There’s a lot of potential in many areas within healthcare. But it requires a mindset shift. People already care dearly for their patients in the healthcare sector. But we have a system that requires patients and users to adapt to the system instead of the other way around. When innovating, there’s an opportunity to change this around and shift the focus from the system to the people using it."
"People already care dearly for their patients in the healthcare sector. But we have a system that requires patients and users to adapt to the system instead of the other way around."Adelin Gashi, Digital Designer, EGGS Design
Do you have a dream project? If so, what would it be?
"I don’t really have a clear answer to that. But I’m tempted to say it would be something similar to what I just did with Heart to Heart. A project that combined service design and digital design in the healthcare sector. It’s great to be part of a project from start to finish and see it implemented and used by people and help them in their lives."
What do you most love about what you do?
“I’m very curious. I love exploring, and working with design is full of exploring, meeting, and learning about people, new ideas, concepts, areas, and industries. Problem-solving motivates me; I find it intriguing. And also being able to transform ideas into something tangible, something that people can understand and use, is a great feeling."
What is good user experience to you?
“That’s a good question. I’d say it’s an experience that is seamless. It’s so well designed that you don’t even notice it’s there. Design in and of itself doesn't have a purpose – it should exist to help you. Not to fulfill its own purpose.”
"Design in and of itself doesn't have a purpose – it should exist to help you. Not to fulfill its own purpose"Adelin Gashi, Digital Designer, EGGS Design
And finally, what made you apply for a job in EGGS?
“Well, now I’m a digital designer, but when I started, I started as an intern.I was looking for a multi-disciplinary space where I could interact and learn from all design disciplines. EGGS seemed like a good place for that. I was doing my Bachelor's and wanted to get work experience, so I applied for an internship, and I got it. Having a BA in product design and service design, I wanted to explore this space in between, which I felt that I could get. And it turned out to be a great fit! I've learned too much, become more confident, and met so many fantastic people here."
Name: Adelin Gashi
Title in EGGS: Digital Designer
Works in EGGS since: 2018 (started as an intern but is now back as a digital designer)
Born in: Germany, moved to Norway when he was three years old
Educational background: BA in product design (including courses in service design) from Oslo Met, Master in Interaction Design from AHO.
Fun fact: Learned to speak german fluently just by watching german tv growing up. None of my parents speak german.