E-Health Often Unavailable to Lower-Income Patients

Note: This research was supported by CTSI's Clinical and Translational Science Training (CTST) program. Authors Adam Schickendanz, MD, was part of the Resident Research Training Program (RRTP) and Training in Clinical Research(TICR), and Urmimala Sarkar, MD, was a CTSI K Scholar.

Urmimala Sarkar, M.D
By Karin Rush-Monroe on February 26, 2013

By Karin Rush-Monroe at UCSF.edu

Lower-income patients want to communicate electronically with their doctors, but the revolution in health care technology often is not accessible to them, due to inadequate health information services within the health care clinics they frequent, according to a survey by UC San Francisco researchers.Increasing numbers of health care systems are offering online services to patients in order to manage care outside of office visits, and this often includes the ability for patients to communicate electronically with health care providers.

The UCSF research team found that a significant majority of uninsured and underinsured patients currently use email, text messaging, and the Internet in their everyday lives and would like to extend that to their health care, but the "safety net" clinics they use generally do not offer the necessary patient portal or secure messaging to support this communication.

Read more at UCSF.edu