Reimagining Healthcare - national survey
As a result of the global COVID-19 pandemic there has been a rapid acceleration in advances of virtual health. Virtual health uses digital technologies to deliver a broad range of health and community-based services to improve and support your health and wellbeing. However, there remains a lack of information around consumer preferences for virtual care: when to use it; what it should look like; and what impact it may have on health outcomes. Virtual health is not just limited to using telehealth services but extends to such things as wearing health supporting gadgets and sensors, from mobile health applications to artificial intelligence, from robotic carers to electronic records. It is diverse and broad in its application and is constantly growing and diversifying.
CHF is involved in conducting a national research project called “Reimagining healthcare in Australia: the journey from telehealth to 21st century design. This research project includes a review of recent academic literature, called a Rapid Review and has an accompanying Consumer Explainer piece. It also includes several national consumer insights surveys. These surveys focus on consumer preferences and expectations in healthcare, and the results, in combination with the other project pieces will shape future service development and research.
Some of the key research findings (published in a Rapid Review by Curtin University, Deloitte and Consumer Health Forum) to date include:
- Involving consumers in virtual health co-design who are at particular risk of digital exclusion will help promote equitable access.
- Poor uptake of virtual care can be related to a misalignment with user requirements such as access, ease of navigation, complexity and privacy concerns.
- Experts and some health systems have identified the need for ‘digital health navigator’ roles to support consumers and the workforce to use digital technology.
- Health system organisation affects implementation. There is little or no coordination of digital health implementation across States’ and Territories’ care delivery systems.
- Consistent with policy shifts to person-centred approaches, virtual health models can empower consumers, particularly in self-care activities.