Experience of primary caregivers in utilising an mHealth application for remote dental screening in preschool children

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ObjectivesThis study aimed to address the acceptance of mHealth applications for a dental screening app that facilitates patient information entry and captures dental photos remotely to assist in caries diagnosis in preschool children in Australia.MethodsAll participants were recruited through the ORIGINS Project, a community-based interventional birth cohort study in Western Australia. Forty-two primary caregivers, who were the users of a teledental screening app, were given a questionnaire with 17 questions; these were constructed based on the theme of the Technology Acceptance Model: perceived ease of use (PE), perceived usefulness (PU), behavioural intention to adopt (BI), anxiety (ANX), attitude toward a behaviour (ATB), and self-efficacy (SE). Cronbach's alpha was estimated to determine internal consistency. Path analysis was employed to quantify the relationship between each theme.ResultsThe mean values for most themes indicated high satisfaction with the intervention among caregivers (scores out of 5): PE (4.54 ± 0.55), PU (4.65 ± 0.49), BI (4.40 ± 0.65), ATB (4.23 ± 0.70), SE (4.36 ± 0.64). Results indicated high consistency in response in the PE, PU, ATB, and SE (α = 0.74-0.84) and moderate consistency was observed in ANX and BI (α = 0.50-0.62). The overall intention of using the dental screening app was significantly related to both PU and ATB (P < 0.05); in addition, the SE and PE also positively affected the PU.ConclusionThe perceived usefulness and attitude toward behaviours influenced the overall behavioural intention of the participants to use the telehealth model in dental screening. Recognising these relationships indicates community readiness for implementing the telehealth application in the dental program and enables identification of areas for improving its diffusion.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)545-552
Number of pages8
JournalAustralian health review : a publication of the Australian Hospital Association
Issue number5
Early online date15 Aug 2023
Publication statusPublished - 15 Aug 2023

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