Despite extensive government investment to expand digital health, minimal research has been conducted on community views of these systems in Australia. In particular, there has been scant attention to the perspectives on digital health of populations affected by blood-borne viruses (BBVs) and sexually transmissible infections (STIs) has received little attention.
The Trust in Digital Health study was conducted by the Centre for Social Research in Health in partnership with community organisations representing four of the priority populations in the current national BBV/STI strategies: people with HIV, trans and gender diverse people, sex workers, and gay and bisexual men.
Our methods included a national, online cross-sectional survey (April–June 2020) of the general population, including specific recruitment targets for the four priority populations. We also conducted semi-structured interviews with key informants (March–June 2020) with expertise in communities affected by BBVs/STIs, stigma and marginalisation.
The variety of evidence we collected suggests that trust in digital health is influenced less by technical design or digital literacy, and more by the relational and structural factors which underpin trust in the institutions responsible for health system design and regulation.