NHS SPS – Medical Compliance Aids and The Importance of User Testing 

How did early user testing help the NHS quickly develop a working prototype?  Take a look at how Zaltek benefits from early user testing.


As part of a wider piece of work, Zaltek are currently working with NHS Special Pharmacy Services (SPS) to create a dynamic, user friendly web application tool to enable community pharmacists, hospital pharmacists and pharmacist technicians to easily assess if medicines are compatible together in multi compartment compliance aids.

NHS SPS is a government owned asset, with an aim to improve the use of medicines to help people live longer, fuller lives. They do this by joining together experts to create a rich consistent source of impartial advice for pharmacists and other professionals using medicines. 

What is a medical compliance aid? 

Also referred to as dosette boxes, ‘trays’, ‘blister packs’. ‘Multi-compartment compliance aids’ are containers which have separate compartments for days of the week and times of the day and can assist people with taking their medicines.

The Challenge 

NHS SPS asked us to design a new system for medical compliance aids that would allow pharmacists to find what medicines are compatible for use in a medical compliance aids.  The new system needed to work on desktop and mobile. 

 The data architecture for the compliance aid will form the backbone of future projects for SPS. 

The Approach 

For this project, we followed our five step process to build a working prototype. These are:

Workshops > Wireframe > Hi-definition Figma Design > Static HTML/CSS/Javascript prototype >  Convert static HTML site into a functioning web app

Specifically addressing WCAG2.1AA compliance in the Static HTML phase. We test the static prototype on mobile devices to ensure a good user experience.

figma page of the dosette system

figma page of the dosette system

User Testing

The feedback we received from literal first time users is of incredible importance because they have yet to form a mental model.  Some observations:

Our users found that the layout of the medicine pages confusing; navigating was a challenge.   Users would “get lost” when navigating a Dosette information page:

Dosette information page after user feedback Dosette information page after user feedback

Dosette information page after user feedback

Dosette information page after user feedback


Our test users, use the breadcrumbs to navigate a lot more than we expected.  The browser back button was hardly ever used.

Search page following user feedback including compatibility notes

Search page following user feedback including compatibility notes


Users liked the use of colour.  It helped with forming a “mental model”.  Generally they were able to use the prototype to find the information they wanted.

The Result 

We are pleased with the results of the initial user testing as a whole and have applied our findings to the next working prototype.