Digital health technology for remote care in response to the COVID-19 pandemic: a scoping review

Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci. 2021 Apr;25(8):3386-3394. doi: 10.26355/eurrev_202104_25751.


COVID-19 pandemic has forced the emergency deployment of digital health technology (DHT) to provide remote care. DHT is a promising option to enable telehealth, and, by the same token, it contributes to the implementation of social distance measures. The objective of this scoping review is to investigate existing DHT solutions that have been put in place to enable remote care in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Structured literature searches were performed in Medline (Ovid), Scopus and CINAHL with Full Text (EBSCOhost), with a mix of keywords and controlled vocabulary unique to each database. The librarian utilized the search strategy on respiratory pandemics created in April 2020 for Medline (Ovid) by Canadian Agency for Drugs and Technology in Health (CADTH). An additional search for grey literature was performed including pre-prints and reports in Google Advanced, LitCovid and MedRx. Two independent reviewers assessed the articles retrieved from the databases (n=131) based on pre-established inclusion criteria and included six articles. Analysis of the results revealed six different types of DHT, including 5 dedicated to telemedicine and one used to track activity of people who were confined to their homes. The results showed positive health-related outcomes and user behavior outcomes. This review revealed that there is limited literature on the use of DHT to enable remote care in response to a pandemic and therefore calls for more documentation of the ongoing deployment of DHTs to support patient safety and the delivery of quality care during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.

PMID:33928627 | DOI:10.26355/eurrev_202104_25751

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