Serge Dubea, VP of Design and Human Factors Serge Dubea, VP of Design and Human Factors

Q+A with Serge Dubeau on Leveraging Usability Testing to Design Safe and Intuitive Products

We recently sat down with our very own Serge Dubeau, Vice President of Design & Human Factors, to hear his thoughts on health outsiders and learn more about his unique approach to designing healthcare products. In his more than 20 years working as an industrial designer, Serge has contributed to the development of more than 100 healthcare products for both startups and Fortune 100 companies.

When working on healthcare products, how does your outside design perspective influence your work?

Serge: I tend to ask questions that may seem obvious in order to get at the heart of the problem, and I find that I am often inspired by ideas that are unrelated to medicine. For example, I helped design the Spider Boot, which was inspired by the configuration of a spider’s legs. The boots were engineered to save the lives (and limbs) of people defusing land mines by distancing the foot from the source of the blast. One of the boots is now part of MoMa’s permanent collection.

What steps do you take to learn more about healthcare?

Serge: Whenever possible, I spend time immersed in the healthcare system. Just last year, I met with more than 300 patients and healthcare providers. I even had the opportunity to observe an open-heart surgery, utilizing a new medical product that we designed. By interacting with patients and other key stakeholders, I am able to gain valuable clinical and ethnographic insights that later inform the design process.

What role does human factors and usability testing play in your work?

Serge: By employing human factors engineering and usability testing, I am able to help mitigate user risk and design healthcare products that are safe and intuitive. Ultimately, this improves the lives of both the healthcare provider and the patient. I recently gave a LifeScience Alley presentation on human factors and usability testing. In case you missed it, be sure to check it out below.

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