Rethink­ing a dig­i­tal screen­ing tool with smart UI design tools boosts response amongst health and wel­fare workers.

Client VAD
  • User interface design
  • Scalable cloud infrastructure
  • Dashboard design

The chal­lenge

We need an improved dig­i­tal tool with a mobile-friend­ly design that effi­cient­ly assists health and wel­fare work­ers in screen­ing the symp­toms of sev­er­al addic­tions”.

This was the chal­lenge the Flem­ish gov­ern­men­tal orga­ni­za­tion VAD (Vlaams exper­tise­cen­trum voor alco­hol, ille­gale drugs, psy­choac­tieve med­icatie, gokken en gamen) gave us. Their cur­rent dig­i­tal tool was out­dat­ed from a tech­no­log­i­cal and user-friend­li­ness per­spec­tive. We cre­at­ed a con­cept for a new gen­er­a­tion of dig­i­tal screen­ing tools, based on ser­vice design & actu­al user jour­neys. Time to give the health and wel­fare work­ers a hand and pro­vide them with an easy to use, reli­able and action­able dig­i­tal screen­ing tool: VAD me-ASSIST.

Dig­i­tal screen­ing tools for health work­ers: fast response needed

VAD offers gen­er­al prac­ti­tion­ers, psy­chi­a­trists, doc­tors in hos­pi­tals, social work­ers (OCMW and CAW), youth wel­fare work­ers, … dig­i­tal screen­ing tools. These tools allow them to sur­vey the poten­tial abuse of alco­hol, tobac­co, ille­gal drugs, med­ica­tion, gam­ing, gam­bling, … and is based upon WHO-approved stan­dards. The health work­ers go through a series of ques­tions that result in a score. This indi­cates the risk of poten­tial addic­tion of the patient or client. 

The for­mer ver­sion of the tool and the relat­ed web plat­form did not respond to two key require­ments that are impor­tant for the users: a smooth intake process and a direct and clear inter­pre­ta­tion of the ques­tion­naire. Result: the num­ber of screen­ings dropped dra­mat­i­cal­ly. That is why VAD chal­lenged Bits of Love to come up with an improved ver­sion of the tool. This is the solu­tion we cre­at­ed for them.

Tech­nol­o­gy made easy

When the Bits of Love team devel­ops a web plat­form, tool or appli­ca­tion, we always put the user in the cen­tre of our think­ing. In this case, the name of our tool already explains a lot: me-ASSIST. Me-ASSIST is an acronym for mod­i­fied elec­tron­ic alco­hol, smok­ing and sub­stance involve­ment screen­ing test. The tool and relat­ed web plat­form need to be extreme­ly intu­itive because it is impor­tant that the ques­tion­naire can be exam­ined with­in the short­est delay. After the eval­u­a­tion of the data, the health work­er needs to know the diag­no­sis direct­ly and unambiguously.

User-friend­ly design is mobile-friend­ly design

The VAD me-assist dig­i­tal screen­ing tool is used by the health or wel­fare work­er autonomous­ly. The tool must be has­sle-free, reli­able and the work­flow should speak for itself. As the tool is often used in a non-office con­text, it should be easy to use on the small screen of a smart­phone or tablet. 

We did a firm rethink­ing of the exist­ing me-ASSIST assess­ment plat­form and made it uncom­pli­cat­ed and scaled it to its essence. We stripped what was super­flu­ous or user-unfriend­ly like the old login-in mod­ule, his­to­ry, refer­ral links and the data­base with pdf files. 

The team of Bits of Love is famil­iar with the appro­pri­ate UI design tools for a spe­cif­ic pur­pose. This results in a robust solu­tion that is being test­ed in a real-life set­ting. More­over, the VAD me-assist tool can eas­i­ly be extend­ed to new test­ing for­mats in the future.

The team of Bits of Love is eager to make a true dif­fer­ence in user inter­face design. Com­bined with our spe­cial­iza­tion in data analy­sis and hands-on expe­ri­ence with func­tion­al assess­ments, the out­come is a future-proof tool that makes the impor­tant task of health and wel­fare work­ers a bit eas­i­er. We are proud that we can make a valu­able con­tri­bu­tion to their mis­sion to help peo­ple who are help­less with­out their inter­ven­tion. And we are proud too that VAD gives us their con­fi­dence to devel­op a range of self-help tools and edu­ca­tion­al games dur­ing the last 7 years. The fact that we share the same val­ues and beliefs gives our col­lab­o­ra­tion a sound basis. 


  • Scal­able tool­box to screen a client for Alco­hol, Smok­ing & Sub­stance abuse
  • Eas­i­ly acces­si­ble in a dif­fi­cult care context
  • Read results quick­ly and unambiguously

The result

The num­ber of screen­ings via the VAD me-assist tool grew sig­nif­i­cant. The response from the health and wel­fare work­ers active­ly using the plat­form was very pos­i­tive. And that was secret­ly what we were hop­ing for: a user-friend­ly tool that makes a tan­gi­ble dif­fer­ence every day. 

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