The aim of this study was to investigate the experiences of patients and providers regarding the use of videoconferences in older patients with depression. The qualitative study consisted of semi-structured interviews with patients and providers and focus group interviews with providers. Themes were identified through using thematic analysis. Three main themes were as follows: 1. Technical Challenges experienced by patients and providers experiences; 2. Videoconferencing as clinical supportive technology; and 3. Therapeutic relationship across face-to-face and videoconferencing formats. Several subthemes describing patients’ and providers’ experiences were identified. Taken together, there was a similarity between expectations, opinions, and attitudes in relation to experiences vertically across all main themes, and horizontally between the main themes. An optimistic outlook influenced user expectations, opinions, and attitudes and acted to mitigate an negative sentiment about technical challenges. This increased the adoption of videoconferencing as a tool for clinical support and enabled the development of a therapeutic relationship using videoconferencing, especially for provider users. Both patients and providers agreed that videoconferences could not replace all face-to-face conversations and that videoconferences, in most cases, were best suited for shorter follow-up consultations. Expectations, opinions, and attitudes, whether negative or positive, seemed to have significant impact on the experiences of patients and especially providers.
- older adults
- qualitative research