x E-health and online health communities in the daily lives of older rural residents during the pandemic. - Human insight

E-health and online health communities in the daily lives of older rural residents during the pandemic.


HumanInsight E-health and online health communities in the daily lives of older rural residents during the pandemic.

Adv Gerontol. 2021;34(4):538-544.

ABSTRACT

The situation of the COVID-19 pandemic has once again reminded of the need to use telemedicine and online health communities, especially in areas where there are not enough places in local hospitals or there are problems with obtaining quality medical care, such as rural areas where rural medicine is focused on treatment of emergency diseases and doctors have difficulties with the possibility of treatment, as well as explaining about the new coronavirus infection to patients and how this disease can be treated. In this case, online health communities provide an opportunity to find out the necessary information, as well as communicate with specialists who know the features of the new coronavirus and can give the necessary advice. Using the example of in-depth interviews with older people from villages in the Leningrad Region and the Republic of Karelia, the article examines the role of telemedicine for older people and communication in online health communities in the context of overcoming loneliness and isolation that exist in rural areas. The article analyzes the features of the use of telemedicine and the key barriers to the use of telemedicine and communication of older people in online disease communities. In rural areas the main barriers to telemedicine use are infrastructure problems and power outages, as well as the lack of computer literacy for communication and elder people’s interaction in online health communities. In the article the role of online health communities is considered in the context of the self-care of older people and from the point of view of the development of self-care of older people in rural peripheral settlements due to the lack of necessary medical care.

PMID:34846813

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