CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 · Yearb Med Inform 2022; 31(01): 167-172
DOI: 10.1055/s-0042-1742520
Section 5: Consumer Health Informatics and Education

Consumer Health Informatics for Racial and Ethnic Minoritized Communities: Minor Progress, Major Opportunities

Rupa S. Valdez
University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA, USA
Courtney C. Rogers
University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA, USA
› Author Affiliations


Objective: By reducing barriers to accessing health services and by supporting health management, consumer health informatics has the potential to reduce health disparities. Yet, technologies are still being designed without considerations for racial and ethnic minoritized populations. This paper reviews consumer health informatics research within this population to assess for whom and how such technologies are being designed.

Methods: We searched four databases from January 2020- December 2021 for literature focused on consumer health informatics and racial and ethnic minoritized populations. We extracted information about the study population, geographic location, stage of the design lifecycle, culturally tailored approaches, community engagement strategies, and considerations for the social determinants of health.

Results: Twenty articles were included in the review. Most of the included literature were original research articles that tested health management interventions focused on one racial or ethnic minoritized population primarily within a confined geographic area within the United States. Seven studies described the extent to which an intervention was culturally tailored, including modifying the content, interface, functionality, and platform. Community engagement strategies varied, but few articles employed robust approaches. Lastly, seven studies detailed considerations for the social determinants of health, including providing hardware to access interventions and incorporating information about community-based resources within an intervention.

Conclusions: There has been moderate progress in consumer health informatics focused on racial and ethnic minoritized populations and many opportunities remain for these technologies to be used as an approach to address health disparities. Future research should utilize community engagement strategies to design interventions that are attune to multiple racial and ethnic minoritized populations across geographic regions in addition to numerous intersectional identities and multiple co-morbidities.

Publication History

Article published online:
04 December 2022

© 2022. IMIA and Thieme. This is an open access article published by Thieme under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonDerivative-NonCommercial License, permitting copying and reproduction so long as the original work is given appropriate credit. Contents may not be used for commercial purposes, or adapted, remixed, transformed or built upon. (

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