New Research Reveals the Imperative for Collaboration Between Digital Inclusion Advocates and the Healthcare Sector
Charting the future of digital health, partnerships in healthcare and digital equity advocates can lead to groundbreaking outcomes and transformative change.
NORTH CONWAY, N.H., October 24, 2023 (Newswire.com) - Digitunity is preparing to release a new commissioned report, "A Call for Collaboration Between the Health Sector and Digital Equity Organizations." Authored by digital health equity consultant Amy Sheon of Public Health Innovators, LLC, this report urges greater interactions between health and digital inclusion advocates to increase their collective impact on digital equity in the United States.
The report notes that encouragement by healthcare professionals can influence patients to use digital health tools that are increasingly showing health benefits. However, that encouragement must be accompanied by efforts to help patients get internet services, devices, and training to use them. The report documents the emerging value of Digital Navigators helping people with these tasks in educational and employment realms but calls for many more of them to be trained to perform these valuable services in the health context. The National Library of Medicine could have a big impact by helping libraries expand their digital literacy services to include digital health navigation. Another standout recommendation from the report involves leveraging a unique healthcare superpower–data that could document disparities in digital technology use and show the impact of digital adoption on health outcomes.
Author Amy Sheon remarked, “Digital health tools that became essential during the pandemic are here to stay. But in a moment when the health sector is appropriately concerned with health equity, aggressive measures are needed to ensure that digital health reduces, rather than exacerbates health disparities. This report serves as a call to action for robust collaborations between the health sector and the digital inclusion community. Healthcare offers the opportunity to test, refine, and apply digital inclusion solutions at scale. This thoroughly aligns the health sector with organizations promoting equity through digitally-enabled education, employment, and civic engagement.”
Key findings of the report also emphasize the necessity for healthcare organizations to develop tailored workflows that connect patients with essential digital resources, underscoring the role of trained professionals, like Community Health Workers (CHWs) and Digital Navigators, in fostering internet adoption and device ownership. The research also spotlights the potential impact of integrating the roles of CHWs and digital navigators.
"Digital inclusivity is no longer a luxury; it's a necessity,” stated Karisa Tashjian, Director of Programs at Digitunity. “This event highlights that by bringing sectors together, everyone will benefit."
To provide a deeper understanding of the report's findings, Digitunity is hosting a webinar on Wednesday, November 1, 2023, from 1:00 - 2:00 p.m. ET. Webinar attendees will receive an exclusive complimentary copy of the research report before Digitunity releases it to the public. The webinar will feature an insightful presentation of the report by Amy Sheon, followed by a panel discussion that she will moderate. Panelists include:
- Theresa Sladek, Strategic Partnership and Northstar Business Development Manager, Literacy Minnesota
- Tsion Tesfaye, Senior Research & Policy Manager, National Digital Inclusion Alliance
- Dr. Katherine Kim, Principal, Consumer Health Informatics and Health Science, MITRE Labs, Health Innovation Center
All attendees will receive a complimentary copy of the "A Call for Collaboration Between the Health Sector and Digital Equity Organizations," report, spotlighting the importance of collaboration between health and digital equity leaders.
For more details and to register for the webinar, please visit https://links.digitunity.org/healthcare_digitalequity_webinar_registration.
About Public Health Innovators, LLC
In 2017, Amy Sheon established Public Health Innovators, LLC to bring public health perspectives to health innovation and to bring innovation to public health. Since the pandemic, the organization has focused on developing digital inclusion approaches for health and promoting their adoption in the healthcare and health technology sectors. To learn more about Amy Sheon and Public Health Innovators’ work, please visit her LinkedIn profile, publichealthinnovators.com, and follow her on “X,” @amysheon.
Digitunity is on a mission to make owning a computer possible for everyone. Owning a computer is essential for people to thrive in the modern economy. Yet 36 million people in the United States don’t have a computer at home. Since the 1980s, Digitunity and its predecessor organization have advanced digital equity by connecting donors of technology with organizations serving people in need. To learn more about Digitunity’s work, please visit https://digitunity.org.