Patients who can benefit the most from digital health hardly engage with new tools

Healthcare software, applications and tools are getting popular and it’s believed that high-tech tools have the potential to revolutionize healthcare and health too. But, the biggest challenge is the gap between what consumers actually want to use and are able to use. This aspect is often ignored.

The Rock Health’s consumer survey probed 4,000 consumers about their digital health habits. Around 8 out of 10, which amounts to 79% of those surveyed this year, search for health information on the internet, and 6 out of 10, which amounts to 58% said they read online provider reviews.

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People using more promising technologies is lesser. Only a quarter i.e. 24% said that they used wearables and mobile applications to track their health. Just about 19% use live video telemedicine- talking to a provider through a video call.

People who can benefit the most from these innovations, like the low-income individuals and the chronically ill seniors, use them the least. Megan Zweig, who led this study, believes that this discrepancy is due to the cost factor.

She believes that we all know how to use Google, so now information is at patients’ fingertips. While tools like wearables, on the other hand are costlier.