Does connected health technology improve health-related outcomes in rural cardiac populations? Systematic review narrative synthesis.

Matthew James Fraser, Trish Gorely, Chris O'Malley, David Muggeridge, Oonagh Giggins, Daniel R Crabtree

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Abstract

Individuals living in rural areas are more likely to experience cardiovascular diseases (CVD) and have increased barriers to regular physical activity in comparison to those in urban areas. This systematic review aimed to understand the types and effects of home-based connected health technologies, used by individuals living in rural areas with CVD. The inclusion criteria included technology deployed at the participant’s home and could be an mHealth (smart device, fitness tracker or app) or telehealth intervention. Nine electronic databases were searched across the date range January 1990–June 2021. A total of 207 full texts were screened, of which five studies were included, consisting of 603 participants. Of the five studies, four used a telehealth intervention and one used a form of wearable technology. All interventions which used a form of telehealth found a reduction in overall healthcare utilisation, and one study found improvements in CVD risk factors. Acceptability of the technologies was mixed, in some studies barriers and challenges were cited. Based on the findings, there is great potential for implementing connected health technologies, but due to the low number of studies which met the inclusion criteria, further research is required within rural areas for those living with cardiovascular disease.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-16
Number of pages17
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Volume19
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 17 Feb 2022

Keywords

  • Cardiovascular disease
  • digital technology
  • wearable technology
  • rural
  • connected health

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