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HIV Self-Testing Personas

This set of three user personas was developed to inform the design and development of next generation HIV self-tests. Originally developed for use by health workers, rapid HIV tests have expanded to include the self-testing use case. Individuals testing themselves have different needs and motivations than health workers, and these attributes can be captured clearly through user personas.

Personas are a methodological tool used in user-centered design to understand user needs. They represent the characteristics and goals of a user group, including common behaviors, skills, attitudes, limitations, and constraints. Personas also capture information on the environment in which the user group operates. The purpose of personas is to communicate user needs and build a common understanding within multidisciplinary teams that can provide focus throughout the product development process, from defining functional product requirements to designing effective delivery strategies.

The three personas selected represent key populations of interest to global and national stakeholders working on HIV/AIDS. These personas were developed in a two-phase process. First, draft personas were created based on literature reviews and expert interviews (n=3). The draft personas were then refined using in-person, semi-structured interviews with members of the user group (n=25-40) to generate validated personas. PATH has conducted and championed “right-fit” technology development since its founding 40 years ago, recognizing that aligning with the motivations and constraints of the end user is essential for product uptake and, ultimately, the ability of a new tool to improve health outcomes.

Publication date: December 2018

HIV Self-Testing Personas

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