Access to online patient portals among individuals with depression and anxiety

Henry Onyeaka, Kobi V. Ajayi, Chioma Muoghalu, Precious O. Eseaton, Crystal Obi Azuike, Gibson Anugwom, Funso Oladunjoye, Kammarauche Aneni, Joseph Firth, John Torous

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Online patient portals are technology-based platforms that offers patients access to their personal medical data. Patient portals have the potential to improve clinical outcomes. Despite their increasing role in the delivery of healthcare, less is known about portal use in mental health populations. This study sought to evaluate online portal use among people with depression and anxiety drawing from a large nationally representative sample. Data was pooled from 4 iterations of the Health Information National Trends Survey (2017–2020). We calculated descriptive statistics to determine the prevalence, reasons, and barriers for portal use. Weighted logistic regression analysis was performed to identify sociodemographic predictors of portal usage among those with depression/anxiety. Of the 3194 individuals with self-reported depression and/or anxiety, less than half (47.2%) reported using their online portal, and portal use increased from 36.3% in 2017 to 50.4% in 2020. Significant sociodemographic predictors of portal usage included gender, age, income, race/ethnicity and education level. Barriers to portal adoption among the study population include personal preferences, concerns about privacy, and operational reasons. Findings highlight the barriers to portal use as well as sub-groups of individuals within mental health contexts that may benefit from targeted interventions to encourage portal adoption.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100073
JournalPsychiatry Research Communications
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2022


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