Use of mobile devices to share information with patients is becoming more and more common among health systems. A new qualitative review from the Cochrane Collaborative provides insights on what the end users and like and don’t like about this form of communication.
Published online in the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, the qualitative evidence synthesis was designed to explore experiences of targeted digital communication via mobile devices on topics related to reproductive, maternal, newborn, child or adolescent health. For purposes of the research, the authors used the term “client” to describe the end users.
To identify appropriate data, the authors searched MEDLINE, MEDLINE In-Process & Other Non-Indexed Citations, Embase, World Health Organization Global Health Library, and POPLINE databases. They looked from inception through July 3 to 6 2017 (depending on the database) for studies that examined clients’ perceptions and experiences of targeted digital communication via mobile device in the topics previously listed.
Of the 35 studies selected, which spanned six continents, 19 were conducted in low- and middle-income settings and 16 in high-income settings. Some studies were hypothetical whereas in others, the participants had experience with the digital communication. The types of digital communication varied, from medical or appointment reminders to information prenatal health, support for smoking cessation in pregnancy, to general information on sexual health.