Knowledge, attitudes and intention regarding mHealth in generation Y: evidence from a population based cross sectional study in Chakaria, Bangladesh.

Journal Title: 
Publication Date: 
Nov 17, 2017

BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: mHealth offers a new opportunity to ensure access to qualified healthcare providers. Therefore, to better understand its potential in Bangladesh, it is important to understand how young people use mobile phones for healthcare. Here we examine the knowledge, attitudes and intentions to use mHealth services among young population.

DESIGN: Population based cross sectional household survey.

SETTING AND PARTICIPANTS: A total of 4909 respondents, aged 18 years and above, under the Chakaria Health and Demographic Surveillance System (HDSS) area, were interviewed during the period November 2012 to April 2013.

METHODS: Participants younger than 30 years of age were defined as young (or generation Y). To examine the level of knowledge about and intention towards mHealth services in generation Y compared with their older counterparts, the percentage of the respective outcome measure from a 2×2 contingency table and adjusted odds ratio (aOR), which controls for potential confounders such as mobile ownership, sex, education, occupation and socioeconomic status, were estimated. The aOR was estimated using both the Cochran-Mantel-Haenszel approach and multivariable logistic regression models controlling for confounders.

RESULTS: Generation Y had significantly greater access to mobile phones (50%vs40%) and better knowledge about its use for healthcare (37.8%vs27.5%;aOR 1.6 (95% CI1.3 to 2.0)). Furthermore, the level of knowledge about two existing mHealth services in generation Y was significantly higher compared with their older counterparts, with aOR values of 3.2 (95% CI 2.6 to 5.5) and 1.5 (95% CI 1.1 to 1.8), respectively. Similarly, generation Y showed significantly greater intention towards future use of mHealth services compared with their older counterparts (aOR 1.3 (95% CI 1.1 to 1.4)). The observed associations were not modified by sociodemographic factors.

CONCLUSION: There is a greater potential for mHealth services in the future among young people compared with older age groups. However, given the low overall use of mHealth, appropriate policy measures need to be formulated to enhance availability, access, utilisation and effectiveness of mHealth services.