Cultural barriers to patient empowerment: Insights from the PatientsEngage digital health platform in India

Dimitra Petrakaki and Chirantan Chatterjee (2023), Policy@Sussex

Digital health platforms enable members of the public to access health information, monitor their conditions, and even receive online consultations or treatment. They also allow patients and carers to interact, sharing experiences that could otherwise be difficult to discuss. This is particularly important for patients with rare medical conditions, who might be phycally dispersed or psychologically isolated. Existing research has explored the role of digital health platforms in empowering patients in Western countries (Petrakaki et al, 2018). However, there is limited research about how such platforms interact with national cultures, and the implications for our understanding of patient empowerment in the Global South. To address these questions, researchers from the University of Sussex interviewed users, employees and directors of India’s digital health platform PatientsEngage.

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