Technology acceptance and trust: Overlooked considerations in young people’s use of digital mental health interventions

Vilas Sawrikar, Kelllie Mote

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Objectives: Digital mental health interventions (DMHIs) have potential to provide support at scale for young people, yet uptake is low. The present study investigated whether attitudes towards technology solutions in relation to perceived usefulness, perceived ease of use, and trust of DMHIs influenced young people’s intentions to use DMHIs.

Methods: Young people aged 17–25 (N = 248) were recruited online via advertising (e.g., Facebook, Twitter) to a survey assessing attitudes of technology acceptance and intentions to use DMHIs, previous use of DMHIs, demographics, and mental health need.
 
Results: Participants reported relatively neutral attitudes towards DMHIs. Outcomes from linear regression indicated that greater perceived usefulness (β = .24) and trust of DMHIs (β = .28) have significant small to moderate positive associations with higher intentions to use DMHIs. Perceived ease of use (β = .07) was not associated with intentions to use DMHIs. Gender, age, previous use of DMHIs, and mental health need did not moderate unique associations between intentions to use DMHIs and perceived usefulness, perceived ease of use, and trust of DMHIs.

Conclusions: Moderate levels of technology acceptance for mental health, particularly in domains of perceived usefulness and trust of DMHIs, may represent a barrier to DMHI adoption among young people. Developers and service providers are recommended to provide information about the usefulness, effectiveness, and trustworthiness of DMHIs to improve uptake among young people.
Original languageEnglish
Article number100686
Number of pages7
JournalHealth Policy and Technology
Volume11
Issue number4
Early online date11 Oct 2022
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2022

Keywords

  • digital mental health
  • young adults
  • young people
  • technology acceptance
  • trust
  • motivation

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