HE_I_P: Health Sciences I. Posters
Zsuzsa Győrffy, Semmelweis University, Faculty of Medicine, Institute of Behavioural Sciences, Budapest, Hungary
Sándor Békási, Health Center, Hungarian Charity Service of the Order of Malta, Budapest, Hungary
Bence Döbrössy, Semmelweis University, Faculty of Medicine, Institute of Behavioural Sciences, Budapest, Hungary
Virág Bognár, Semmelweis University, Faculty of Medicine, Institute of Behavioural Sciences, Budapest, Hungary
Nóra Radó, Semmelweis University, Faculty of Medicine, Institute of Behavioural Sciences, Budapest, Hungary
Emília Morva, Regional Directorate, Hungarian Charity Service of the Order of Malta, Budapest, Hungary
Szabolcs Zsigri, Zsigri Háziorvosi Kft., Budapest, Hungary
Péter Tari, Ciprus 2007 Kft., Budapest, Hungary
Edmond Girasek, Semmelweis University, Faculty of Medicine, Institute of Behavioural Sciences, Budapest, Hungary
Introduction: The coronavirus pandemic resulted in the boom of telemedical services on a global level. To facilitate access to healthcare services for underserved populations and thus lessening social health inequalities, the careful study of equalizing and unequalizing factors of telemedicine is indispensable. The recent research concentrates on the vulnerable group of homeless persons, and later on, expands to other socioeconomically challenged, underserved populations in the countryside of Hungary.
Aims: The main aim of the the research was to examine the attitudes and openness of homeless persons in Hungary towards telecare to map out the enabling factors and obstacles paving the way towards the introduction of telehealth services.
Methods: Quantitative survey among homeless people (n=98) was completed in 4 shelters providing mid- and long-term accommodation in Budapest, Hungary. Comparison was made with data of a reference control group of non-homeless persons recruited from 2 primary care units (n=110). The research team developed a unique questionnaire measuring attitudes towards accessibility of health care services and telecare.
Results: The results demonstrate significant differences in access to and use of health care services when compared with the reference group, which seem to correlate with the willingness to try telecare. Preferring in-person doctor-patient consultations is significantly more characteristic of those reporting problems with getting adequate health services in the past year, which is what the homeless group is more inclined to perceive (18.9% vs. 7.4%).
Conclusion: Digital health technologies, such as telecare potentially expand the scale of health services in vulnerable groups, such as homeless persons or socioeconomically disadvantaged populations. As a next step in the research, I intend to bring the questionnaire to primary care units in socioeconomically challenged rural communities in the countryside of Hungary to see whether these populations show a similar pattern. Based on the attitudes towards telecare, key factors such as the importance of building trust towards healthcare services could help in expanding care and ensure the potential success of telecare programs.
Funding: OTKA -FK 134372
Semmelweis University, Doctoral School of Mental Health Sciences