Power, Jess, Harris, Joanne and Leaper, David J. (2016) Using QFD As A Method To Develop Functional Medical Products For Children With Cancer. In: The 90th Textile Institute World Conference, 25th – 28th April 2016, Poznan, Poland.

Quality Function Deployment (QFD) is a recognised method of translating customer needs into appropriate technical requirements to inform ergonomic design development. This paper details how QFD has been used to develop a tactile advanced product for a medical application. The project has undertaken innovative experimental and industrial research which has led to the design of a child-focused “Wiggle Bag” which will be used to safely harness and reduce infection at the site of a venous catheter placed in the chest wall of long-term child cancer sufferers. Children with cancer regularly have long term central venous catheters inserted through their upper chest wall to deliver medication. They can result in medical issues, particularly infections or accidental removal, but also discomfort for the children, particularly when sleeping. The research uses an inductive approach, triangulating various research strategies including questionnaires, focus groups and interviews from parents, carers and medical personnel. QFD was used to bring together the key findings from the primary data analysis to establish design criteria and inform the product development. The outcome of the research was a functional product ergonomically designed for maximum comfort and safety, with the added unique selling point of having antibacterial properties.

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