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Measuring and evaluating sexual health in the era of digital health: challenges and opportunities

Gibbs, Jo; Solomon, Danielle; Jackson, Louise; Mullick, Saiqa; Burns, Fiona; Shahmanesh, Maryam; (2022) Measuring and evaluating sexual health in the era of digital health: challenges and opportunities. Sexual Health , 19 (4) pp. 336-345. 10.1071/SH22068. Green open access

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Abstract

Digital health has become increasingly embedded within sexual health service delivery and is now an established part of the user journey. It can support the provision of information and access to care across the sexual health continuum and facilitate the delivery of differentiated care with tailored and layered interventions that meet an individual's and target populations' need. However, despite advances in digital health, many challenges remain in the measurement and evaluation of sexual health. Reaching underserved populations, ensuring that both the intervention and the outcomes being measured are appropriate, and consistent collection of data (across settings and over time) are all potential obstacles to a full realisation of these opportunities. In order for digital health to improve sexual health and wellbeing, and reduce morbidity, the following need to occur: (1) ensure the necessary digital, health care, laboratory, legal and regulatory and surveillance infrastructure is in place to provide access to those with a sexual health need; (2) empowerment of end users and communities to take control of their own health through engagement in the development of interventions, and to ensure that outcomes of importance are measured; (3) tailoring and layering of interventions to provide equitable access to care; (4) integrating the digital ecosystem with the existing healthcare and external ecosystem; (5) measure and evaluate the unmet needs, gaps and quality of the experience, taking a realist evaluation approach; and (6) measure and evaluate the economic and distributional impacts associated with digital services or interventions in sexual health.

Type: Article
Title: Measuring and evaluating sexual health in the era of digital health: challenges and opportunities
Location: Australia
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1071/SH22068
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1071/SH22068
Language: English
Additional information: This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License (CC BY-NC-ND). See: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/
Keywords: Science & Technology, Life Sciences & Biomedicine, Public, Environmental & Occupational Health, Infectious Diseases, data, digital, health services, internet, online, public health, sexual health, STIs, RANDOMIZED CONTROLLED-TRIAL, ECONOMIC-EVALUATION, CARE
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute for Global Health > Infection and Population Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute for Global Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10154888
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