There has never been a time in which community health centers have had greater opportunties to reach out and engage with a patient population who at times are challenging, due to complex socio-economic issues, to maintain continued communications. Electronic patient engagement tools such as patient portals, health apps, text messaging services and other social networking technologies have ushered in a more sustainable and varied number of channels of activation and engagement. On top of this, the price of mobile communication technologies has decreased enough to the point where it is affordable even within underserved populations.
The challenge before health centers now is to leverage these new messaging channels effectively and safely without overly increasing the burden of adoption for their patients. The guide provided below builds off the framework first outlined in the article "A Multidimensional View of Personal Health Systems for Underserved Populations". This new and updated guide addresses the new technologies, policies, and organizational challenges that health centers are dealing with and provides strategies for effective adoption and decision support tools for determing best methods of deployment.