Oncology: Decision making & Ablation procedures

UX/UI Design, Philips Experience Design, Health-tech

As UX/UI designer at Philips Experience Design, I’m responsible for translating complex clinical information into user interfaces by analyzing workflows, visualizing data into components, creating user flows while co-creating with the end user. 

Different projects

Within Philips Experience Design I have been working / am working on different projects. Most of the projects are in the field of oncology, from supporting clinical decision making to supporting clinical procedures. In addition, I’m part of projects related to harmonization of solutions by the use of a modular approach in a design system.

Project 1: Integrated Oncology

Support clinical decision making in oncology, which means decisions about the diagnosis and treatments of cancer patients. See Philips Portfolio Oncology, or Precision Medicine Oncology

Project 2: Advanced Ablation Planner

Support interventional radiologists to plan an ablation procedure and treat the patient in a more efficient and effective way.

Project 3: Enabling modularity

Creating and testing a strategy to enable digital modularity within Philips Experience Design.

Project 4: Harmonization

Inventorizing and analyzing different products and ways of working regarding UX, UI, and software to create one harmonized solution and one integrated way of working.

My role in a multidisciplinary team

In these project my role varies. First, I work on UI design activities such as creating components, interfaces and flows, by the use of an atomic approach. Second, I work on UX design activities such as mapping and optimizing workflows, co-creating with the user and user testing. Third, I’m involved in creating a strategy for a way of working within the Philips Design community.

To be able to do all of this for a clinical setting, I need to acquire clinical knowledge about the oncology field and ablation procedures. Different types of knowledge: like contextual knowledge about clinical settings, medical knowledge about cancer, and data related knowledge about how to combine and prioritize medical data. If the designer doesn’t understand this right, it could have a massive impact on the decision making about patients’ lives.

Discussing a patient journey for cancer patients by diving into different phases, related clinicians, touchpoints, etc.

Creating one overview of different applications used in the patient journey by different clinicians to analyze the screen flow.

The process

Discover: how to be part of an existing project that requires complex medical knowledge?

The first project (Integrated Oncology) started in 2014 so it has a lot of background: conceptual, medical, but also in design and software. The UX lead of the team, at the same time my buddy, onboarded me and introduced me to the project. I was impressed, how could I as soon as possible be part of this project and get knowledge of everything she did over the last few years?

To get familiar with contextual knowledge about clinical settings, I asked myself questions like:

  • What are the different user roles?
  • What are user goals and needs?
  • What is the workflow of clinicians in a certain setting and how do they make decisions?

To gain medical knowledge, I asked my clinical colleagues questions like:

  • What does a type of cancer look like?
  • How does it behave?
  • What are the types of diagnoses and treatments and how do they work?
  • What are clinical guidelines and pathways?
  • How is the anatomy of different body parts where the cancer is active?

Finally, I got to understand data related knowledge about different medical data, like different cancer type stages, celltypes, mutations, lab results, treatment details, in order to finally prioritize and combine this data.

Although I jumped into existing projects in which already a lot of knowledge was gained and many concepts and designs were explored and improved by many iterations, I could still apply the design thinking process.

Visualizing complex medical information in an easy way to understand it better and to be able to easily explain it to others.

Visualizing my own process in order to explain new colleagues or managers about the process.

Frame: define requirements and challenges within a multidisciplinary team

The user problems were sometimes already defined, but how can I continue this process to solve these problems? There are many challenges in these projects, such as creating a user interface that is standardized as well as personalized to the patient, create components that could be used for any patient case (scalability) or creating a UI library (Sketch toolkit) based on a generic design system. My team and I define challenges and corresponding requirements on which we are working in different sprints.

What I like a lot in the frame-phase, is the need to work closely with my team members. A multidisciplinary team is crucial in this type of project. To frame the challenge, I need a clinical use case and I need to understand it. A challenging task, since the data varies from medical images of the patient to a change in the patient’s DNA. In addition, all kinds of non-diagnostic factors play a role in decision-making and these must be brought together so that it’s clear and easy to understand.

“Very impressive, I was not expecting that we needed this.”


RSNA December 2019, Chicago

Discussing different states of a component that affects decision making about patients’ lives with usability engineer and clinical scientist.

Brainstorming about modularity approach in different clinical applications: how can we best harmonize? What is the best way of working?


Ideate & build: sketching, (co-)creating and prototyping

Although every challenge can be different, they all have an ideate-phase, fun! Brainstorming, sketching, discussing, creating a range of cool ideas!  I sketch, often create some wireframes or designs and discuss these with my team. I receive feedback on the data structure, the usability and the visual aspects, enough to continue with!


Afbeeldingsresultaat voor sketch logo Afbeeldingsresultaat voor invision logo Afbeeldingsresultaat voor confluence logo Afbeeldingsresultaat voor jira logo Afbeeldingsresultaat voor microsoft teams

Creating rules and specifications for motion design with motion designer and design technologist.

Facilitating co-create workshop with different disciplines: medical scientists, design leads, UX designers and software engineers.

Iterations & handover

Improving by doing iterations: improve over and over again, together with the user. Since my time here at Philips comes to an end, I need to handover the project to another UX designer so that they can continue in a smooth way. Challenge: how can I handover the project just as good as my UX lead did?

What have I been working on?

UI Library

From components to libraries to work towards scalable solutions by the use of a Design System


Thinking about modularity by the use of a Design System

UI Design

Exploring UI components

RSNA, Chicago

Concept validating
(Video RSNA, 2019)

RSNA, Chicago

Concept validating
(Video RSNA, 2019)

RSNA, Chicago

Concept validating
(Video RSNA, 2019)


Creating a storyline for presenting my work

UI Design

Exploring UI components: data vizualisations


Research: what do others do?


What is the workflow of an Interventional Radiologist?


Facilitating workshops with multidisciplinary teams

Task analysis

What are the task the user need to perform in which phase?


Facilitating workshops with multidisciplinary teams


Facilitating workshop with multidisciplinary team

My team

  • The complexity: diving into oncology and design for medical use cases.
  • The impact that I can make on clinicians’ and patients’ lives.
  • Working in a multidisciplinary team and experiencing that 1+1=3

  • People expecting that things are ‘finished’: they are never finished since they can always be improved.
  • High barriers to test with real users (privacy and sensitivity of making mistakes)

These projects give me the chance to focus on things that I find really important in life: the connection with people, keep learning and always looking for new challenges.

Because of confidentiality reasons no screens can be shared yet.