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Tag: mobile tools

Stop the Divide: Facilitators and Barriers to Uptake of Digital Health Interventions Among Socially Disadvantaged Populations

Price-Haywood EG, Arnold C, Harden-Barrios J, Davis T. Stop the Divide: Facilitators and Barriers to Uptake of Digital Health Interventions Among Socially Disadvantaged Populations. Ochsner J. Spring 2023;23(1):34-42. doi:10.31486/toj.22.0101

This qualitative study provided facilitators and barriers to implementing a new electronic patient portal (MyChart) in predominantly Black/African American and/or Medicaid-/Medicare-insured populations. MyChart is a portal accessible by mobile phone or computer with internet service. The program launched in Louisiana in 2020 and includes a digital medicine program that provides access to health coaches, clinical pharmacists, data from remote monitoring equipment, and appointment scheduling tools. For this study, 40 patients and 30 providers were surveyed about their experiences using the digital medicine platform. Participants described their access experience, attitudes, satisfaction, and challenges using health technology. Most patients were middle-aged, female, Black/African Americans who lived in urban areas and were insured by Medicaid. Most providers were young White male physicians who served predominantly Medicare/Medicaid-insured populations. Patients liked the consolidation of their health information, ease of appointment scheduling, medication refill requests, and medical advice messaging. As the mobile phone was the preferred access method, it is notable that most patients accessed these things successfully from their phones. Practitioners felt the largest barrier to implementation was the requirement to respond to too many messages, producing workload inefficiencies. While patients liked not traveling to clinics for visits, telemedicine visits were difficult on mobile phones. A lack of high-speed broadband access prevented some patients from engaging in telemedicine visits. Practitioners had concerns about video quality, safety when visits occurred in public spaces, like a car or workplace, and workflow issues around wait times. Most participants had positive views of using technology to help manage health. It remains critical to provide resources, like high-speed broadband access and digital navigators to push the digital health field forward in a sustainable way for patients and providers.


Researchers seek healthy checks and balances for how products are designed

Article Excerpt: Nowadays, people spend hours interacting with technology, a giant sector of the product environment. The average person spends about four hours on their smartphone, a spike in use attributable to the endless scrolling opportunities on social media apps. Those apps create easy solutions to garden-variety chores, from ordering food, to hailing a ride, to getting goods and groceries delivered.

With such convenience at our fingertips comes a messy health conundrum, says Sara Singer, PhD, a professor of health policy and medicine who studies the human effects of the product environment. As technology encourages 24-7 digital connectivity, there’s a coinciding rise in unhealthy behaviors: poor sleep, poor nutrition, lack of exercise, less outdoor time and social isolation. The problem is, there’s no good way to measure those connections; worse yet, there’s no real mechanism to combat the unhealthy habits. Singer hopes to change that.

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Article Source: SCOPE – Stanford Medicine


Symposium to Spotlight Digital Mental Health Technology

Article Excerpt: Experts in the field of digital mental health will gather at Dartmouth on Sept. 19 to discuss opportunities and challenges in developing innovative digital tools that can transform mental health care. President Sian Leah Beilock will deliver opening remarks to kick off the Digital Mental Health & AI Symposium organized by the Center for Technology and Behavioral Health at the Hanover Inn. “The Center for Technology and Behavioral Health is a leader in the science of digital health as applied to health behavior,” says CTBH Director Lisa Marsch. “We are excited to host this event with the Dartmouth community to highlight the opportunities for using digital health tools to promote mental health anytime and anywhere.”

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Article Source: Dartmouth News


Mobile Voice Recognition Tech Can Help to Safeguard Mental Health Services

Article Excerpt: An intuitive, mobile solution using voice recognition that allows mental health clinicians to update notes, request changes to medication and create referral letters either while with the patient or straight afterwards, can radically reduce the time spent on administrative tasks. Information is recorded verbally, which is much quicker; and requests for additional services and support are processed immediately, avoiding unacceptable delays. Critically, patient information is up to date and, with direct integration to the EPR or other legacy system, all health providers, from acute services to GPs, have immediate visibility of a patient’s current status. This is particularly important for patients experiencing both mental and physical illness.

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Article Source: Digital Health


New Study Asks Which Smartphone Treatments Best Help Smokers Quit

Article Excerpt: Could your smartphone hold the key to quitting smoking? As new, technology-powered smoking cessation tools become available, a University of Florida research team is aiming to determine which ones work the best in real-world settings. In a newly funded study, psychologist JESSE DALLERY, PhD, along with implementation scientist RAMZI SALLOUM, PhD, will compare the impact of smartphone-delivered treatments to help smokers kick the habit and lead tobacco-free lives.

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Article Source: University of Florida News


Using mobile sensing data to assess stress: Associations with perceived and lifetime stress, mental health, sleep, and inflammation

Byrne ML, Lind MN, Horn SR, Mills KL, Nelson BW, Barnes ML, Slavich GM, Allen NB. (2021). Using mobile sensing data to assess stress: Associations with perceived and lifetime stress, mental health, sleep, and inflammation. Digital Health.

Researchers conducted a pilot study to validate a mobile sensing collection tool called Effortless Assessment of Risk States with measures of stress, mental health, sleep duration and inflammation. The study collected affective text language from smartphones among 25 young adult participants at a university. Participants installed a custom keyboard on their phones that collect every third word typed across all apps and the researchers analyzed text sentiment using a software package. The study collected data at two timepoints: once during a relatively less academically demanding period and once during a final exam period when participants are likely to be more stressed. Measures of stress, mental health and sleep are self-reported surveys. Saliva samples were collected to assess inflammation by analyzing the level of sCRP protein. Results indicate that the total number of positive words, total of negative words, and total of emotion expression words were strongly associated with lifetime stress exposure. Total negative words were found to be associated with decreased hours of sleep. Affective language was also shown to be associated with higher levels of stress and lower sCRP protein levels. Findings support the potential of using a mobile sensing tool to identify high stress and stress-related problems. For future directions, it could be helpful to develop a tool that can collect and analyze phrases of text (rather than words) and use alternate mobile sensing tools outside of keyboard usage.


Using natural language processing and sentiment analysis to augment traditional user-centered design: Development and usability study

Petersen C, Halter R, Kotz D, et al. (2020). Using Natural Language Processing and Sentiment Analysis to Augment Traditional User-Centered Design: Development and Usability Study. JMIR Mhealth Uhealth. 8(8): e16862. doi: 10.2196/16862

Researchers developed a mobile app for a Bluetooth-connected resistance exercise band to help seniors mitigate sarcopenia (age-related loss of muscle mass) and applied natural language processing (NLP) and sentiment analysis to end-user interview data. Read More


Researchers Develop Chemistry Needed to Create Marijuana Breathalyzer

Article Excerpt: UCLA chemists have reported the key chemical discovery necessary for the creation of a small, electronic marijuana breathalyzer. The research is published in Organic Letters, a peer-reviewed journal of the American Chemical Society.

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Article Source: Science Daily


Connected medical technology and cybersecurity informed consent: A new paradigm

Tully J, Coravos A, Doerr M, Dameff C. (2020). Connected medical technology and cybersecurity informed consent: A new paradigm. Journal of Medical Internet Research. 22(3): e17612. doi: 10.2196/17612

In this viewpoint discussion, the authors propose the development of cybersecurity-informed patient consent to address the potential risks to patients (physical harm, compromised private health information) from connected medical technologies (e.g. wearable activity trackers, mobile apps, implantable medical devices, telemedicine platforms). Read More