Collections > Electronic Theses and Dissertations > Acceptance of health services on mobile phones: a study of consumer perceptions

CONTEXT: Mobile phones are a popular technology capable of portable computing and data access. These features could be helpful for delivering health care services. OBJECTIVE: This study examined health consumers' perceptions of mobile phone health services and their intentions to adopt the technology. DESIGN: Participants viewed a presentation introducing mobile phone services for interacting with health professionals, taking health actions, delivering health information, and managing health care services. Afterwards, semi-structured interviews inquired about their perceptions and acceptance of the technology. ANALYSIS: Qualitative analysis identified emerging themes from interview transcripts. PARTICIPANTS: Forty adult health consumers who were healthy individuals or patients with chronic health conditions - additionally, they had experience with health services delivered through information technology, or they did not. RESULTS: All participants intended to use the technology: thirty were ready to adopt immediately, while ten intended to adopt later upon the need or when particular conditions were met. Among all respondents, sixteen were interested in adopting a selection of the services only. Diverse motivations and pathways may shape health consumers' adoption decision. However, the general process has potential adopters considering their health status and health environment, their personality, and the perceived helpfulness of the technology. Helpfulness was determined by reflection upon positive and negative perceptions of the technology and consideration of usability and safety. Participants had positive impressions that the technology supports healthy behaviors and fosters quality and efficiency of care. There were also preferences for mobile and digital health services. Furthermore, participants believed the technology could support health information behaviors. The negative perceptions were concerns that the technology requires immense resources and skills, is stressful to use, neglects the social dimension of health care, and threatens the quality of care. Consequently, there was interest in the development of safe, responsive, and inclusive mobile health systems. Implementation of mobile phone health services should respond to health consumers' interests and concerns. CONCLUSION: Health consumers are interested in using mobile phone health services.