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A Comparative Content Analysis of Digital Channels for Ventricular Assist Device Patients, Caregivers, and Healthcare Practitioners

Ko, Keum Hee Kimmi*; Dunn, Jessica Lea*; Straker, Karla*; Nusem, Erez*; Gregory, Shaun*; Wrigley, Cara†,‡

doi: 10.1097/MAT.0000000000000924
Adult Circulatory Support

This article seeks to review and analyze the emergence of digital channels designed for ventricular assist device (VAD) patients, caregivers, and practitioners and to understand how such digital channels support the user experience of VAD implantation. Following a content analysis methodology, the authors investigated 16 digital channels designed for VAD patients, caregivers, and practitioners, with data being analyzed thematically. Competitor Positioning Matrix diagrams were created to visually represent the landscape of digital channels that support VAD stakeholders. These matrices identified opportunities and potential areas for improvement in future VAD digital channel design, with an emphasis on interactivity coupled with intelligence and focus along the various stages of the VAD patient journey. Innovation in digital channels has the potential to reduce burden on all users by enabling communication, self-management, and remote monitoring. Digital channels can be information enhanced for point of care, function as a decision support tools or be used to empower patient-caregiver pairs to be more sufficient with self-management, while enabling communication with their practitioner.

From the *Sydney School of Architecture, Design and Planning, University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia

Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Monash University, Clayton, VIC, Australia

Innovative Cardiovascular Engineering and Technology Laboratory (ICETLAB), Critical Care Research Group, The Prince Charles Hospital, Chermside, QLD, Australia.

Submitted for consideration January 2018; accepted for publication in revised form October 2018.

Disclosure: The authors have no conflicts of interest to report.

This work was supported by the National Health and Medical Research Council Centre for Research Excellence (APP1079421).

Supplemental digital content is available for this article. Direct URL citations appear in the printed text, and links to the digital files are provided in the HTML and PDF versions of this article on the journal’s Web site (

Correspondence: Keum Hee Kimmi Ko, Sydney School of Architecture, Design and Planning, University of Sydney, 148 City Road, Darlington, Sydney, Australia. Email:

Copyright © 2019 by the American Society for Artificial Internal Organs