Acceptance and adoption of health information technology: An assessment of attitudes toward personal health records
A multitude of Health Information Technology (HIT) products are being introduced into the market to address some of the numerous challenges within the healthcare industry through the use of electronic, interoperable record keeping and communication. The focus of this research is on personal health records (PHRs) which are electronic records of personal health-related information for a single individual that can be drawn from multiple interoperable sources to share and manage their health. Due to PHRs being in their infancy, and currently low adoption rates, the purpose of these studies was to identify the consumer characteristics most likely related to acceptance, adoption and use of PHR innovations. First, a series of seven focus groups was conducted to gather qualitative information about the attitudes toward PHR technologies. Themes derived from the discussions (positive and negative initial reactions, different formats for record keeping, communication trends, and perceived benefits and barriers) aided the development of a survey to assess attitudes, beliefs and intentions to use PHRs. Second, an online PHR survey was administered (N = 401) and the results from the 35 attitude items were factor analyzed, resulting in 6 distinct factors: Perceived Usefulness, Technology Self-Efficacy, Perceived Ease-of-Use, Perceived Behavioral Control, Health Literacy, and Health Status. These six factors and demographic characteristics were then used to evaluate the equivalence of PHR-adoption group membership (non-users and contemplators). Results indicated that although major differences in attitudes toward PHRs were not found from the survey responder's demographics (age, race, sex, income, education, health status, technology experience), some factor scales could differentiate between groups. Respondents with larger scale scores on Perceived Usefulness, Perceived Ease-of-Use and Perceived Behavioral Control tended to indicate that a survey responder agreed more often with these concepts and would likely decide viii to use or invest in PHR technologies (contemplators) in the future. Those responders who were not interested in PHRs tended to disagree more or have lower scores on the Health Literacy items (knowing how to obtain their health information, understanding printed health information, and being an educated patient). In conclusion, widespread adoption and use of PHRs may not occur unless (1) the technology provides perceptible value to users (usefulness) and is easy to learn and use, and (2) more general education is given on the uses of health information to increase health literacy. PHRs seem to be accepted as a good idea, but without changes in some external factors, adoption of PHRs for the masses may not become reality any time soon.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--Wichita State University, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, Dept. of Psychology