Title: Medical emergency dynamics in disaster-prone countries - implications for medical device design

Authors: Ana Laura R. Santos; Linda S.G.L. Wauben; Punto Dewo; Richard Goossens; Han Brezet

Addresses: Design for Sustainability, Faculty of Industrial Design Engineering, Delft University of Technology, Building 32, Landbergstraat 15, 2628 CE Delft, The Netherlands ' BioMechanical Engineering, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Delft University of Technology, Building 32, Landbergstraat 15, 2628 CE Delft, The Netherlands; Design for Sustainability, Faculty of Industrial Design Engineering, Delft University of Technology, Building 32, Landbergstraat 15, 2628 CE Delft, The Netherlands; Department of Surgery, Erasmus University Medical Centre, 's-Gravendijkwal 230, 3015 CE Rotterdam, The Netherlands ' Department of Orthopaedics and Traumatology, Faculty of Medicine, Universitas Gadjah Mada/Dr. Sardjito General Hospital, Jl. Farmako Sekip Utara, Yogyakarta, 55281, Indonesia ' Department of Industrial Design Engineering, Faculty of Industrial Design Engineering, Delft University of Technology, Building 32. Landbergstraat 15, 2628 CE Delft, The Netherlands; Department of Neuroscience, Erasmus University Medical Center, 's-Gravendijkwal 230, 3015 CE Rotterdam, The Netherlands ' Faculty of Industrial Design Engineering, Delft University of Technology, Building 32, Landbergstraat 15, 2628 CE Delft, The Netherlands

Abstract: Emergency medical services and surgery are an essential part of the local response to natural and humanitarian disasters. The aim of this study is to identify performance obstacles regarding the use of medical devices in medical emergencies. The case study, conducted in the Dr. Sardjito General Hospital in Indonesia, entails semi-structured interviews with surgeons from the Orthopaedics and Traumatology Department, as well as exploratory observations in the emergency and operating rooms. A literature-based reporting tool, observable performance obstacles (OPO), was designed and tested. The results demonstrate that data collection through observation yields rich insights that are relevant to the literature on human factors, and to the applied field of user-centred design. This experience also reveals the inherent difficulty of doing research in the dynamic setting of medical emergencies. As a result, several changes to the OPO are proposed for its application in follow-up projects.

Keywords: systems approach; human factors; performance obstacles; medical devices; user-centred design; emergency medical services; humanitarian surgery; disaster-prone countries; Indonesia; orthopaedics; traumatology; medical emergencies; emergency dynamics; medical device design; emergency management; local response; natural disasters; humanitarian disasters.

DOI: 10.1504/IJHFE.2013.057609

International Journal of Human Factors and Ergonomics, 2013 Vol.2 No.2/3, pp.87 - 115

Received: 16 Jul 2012
Accepted: 11 Mar 2013

Published online: 14 Nov 2013 *

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