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Unmet digital health service needs in dermatology patients


Greis, Christian; Meier Zürcher, Christine; Djamei, Vahid; Moser, Andreas; Lautenschlager, Stephan; Navarini, Alexander A (2018). Unmet digital health service needs in dermatology patients. Journal of Dermatological Treatment, 29(7):643-647.

Abstract

BACKGROUND
Digital health services are rapidly gaining acceptance in healthcare systems. Dermatology as an image-centric specialty is particularly well suited for telemedical services. However, dermatology patients' demands of electronic services remain largely unexplored.
METHODS
This study investigated patients' views in primary, secondary, and tertiary referral centers. In August 2017, 841 questionnaires were filled in by dermatology patients.
RESULTS
76.34% expressed interest in using digital healthcare services as part of medical consultations. 84.41% of all patients would complete their initial registration form electronically. Fewer patients were comfortable with sending pictures of skin changes to their doctors using email (40.89%) or mobile health applications (40.61%). Specific interest was indicated for arranging appointments online (90.80%) and electronically-placed prescriptions (76.56%), rather than online learning videos (42.03%), and actual online consultations (34.53%). 65.37% of patients would pay for online consultations themselves.
CONCLUSIONS
Taken together, interest in electronic health services is high in dermatology patients. Our data suggest that readily understandable electronic services such as online-arranged appointments and electronic prescriptions are of higher interest to patients than the current type of online consultations. Therefore, the full potential of teledermatology still remains to be tapped by newer, more attractive forms of services closely adapted to patients' demands.

Abstract

BACKGROUND
Digital health services are rapidly gaining acceptance in healthcare systems. Dermatology as an image-centric specialty is particularly well suited for telemedical services. However, dermatology patients' demands of electronic services remain largely unexplored.
METHODS
This study investigated patients' views in primary, secondary, and tertiary referral centers. In August 2017, 841 questionnaires were filled in by dermatology patients.
RESULTS
76.34% expressed interest in using digital healthcare services as part of medical consultations. 84.41% of all patients would complete their initial registration form electronically. Fewer patients were comfortable with sending pictures of skin changes to their doctors using email (40.89%) or mobile health applications (40.61%). Specific interest was indicated for arranging appointments online (90.80%) and electronically-placed prescriptions (76.56%), rather than online learning videos (42.03%), and actual online consultations (34.53%). 65.37% of patients would pay for online consultations themselves.
CONCLUSIONS
Taken together, interest in electronic health services is high in dermatology patients. Our data suggest that readily understandable electronic services such as online-arranged appointments and electronic prescriptions are of higher interest to patients than the current type of online consultations. Therefore, the full potential of teledermatology still remains to be tapped by newer, more attractive forms of services closely adapted to patients' demands.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, further contribution
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Dermatology Clinic
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Language:English
Date:November 2018
Deposited On:22 Feb 2019 13:56
Last Modified:24 Feb 2019 06:50
Publisher:Informa Healthcare
ISSN:0954-6634
OA Status:Closed
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1080/09546634.2018.1441488
PubMed ID:29455570

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