Open Access Open Badges Research article

Factors influencing consumer adoption of USB-based Personal Health Records in Taiwan

Wen-Shan Jian1, Shabbir Syed-Abdul25, Sanjay P Sood3, Peisan Lee2, Min-Huei Hsu2, Cheng-Hsun Ho4, Yu-Chuan Li5* and Hsyien-Chia Wen1*

Author Affiliations

1 School of Health Care Administration, Taipei Medical University, Taipei, Taiwan

2 Institute of Biomedical Informatics, National Yang-Ming University, Taipei, Taiwan

3 Health Informatics & Electronics Division, Centre for Development of Advanced Computing, Mohali, India

4 Graduate Institute of Information Management, National Taipei University, New Taipei, Taiwan

5 College of Medical Science and Technology, Taipei Medical University, Taipei, Taiwan

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BMC Health Services Research 2012, 12:277  doi:10.1186/1472-6963-12-277

Published: 27 August 2012



Usually patients receive healthcare services from multiple hospitals, and consequently their healthcare data are dispersed over many facilities’ paper and electronic-based record systems. Therefore, many countries have encouraged the research on data interoperability, access, and patient authorization. This study is an important part of a national project to build an information exchange environment for cross-hospital digital medical records carried out by the Department of Health (DOH) of Taiwan in May 2008. The key objective of the core project is to set up a portable data exchange environment in order to enable people to maintain and own their essential health information.

This study is aimed at exploring the factors influencing behavior and adoption of USB-based Personal Health Records (PHR) in Taiwan.


Quota sampling was used, and structured questionnaires were distributed to the outpatient department at ten medical centers which participated in the DOH project to establish the information exchange environment across hospitals. A total of 3000 questionnaires were distributed and 1549 responses were collected, out of those 1465 were valid, accumulating the response rate to 48.83%.


1025 out of 1465 respondents had expressed their willingness to apply for the USB-PHR. Detailed analysis of the data reflected that there was a remarkable difference in the “usage intention” between the PHR adopters and non-adopters (χ2 =182.4, p < 0.001). From the result of multivariate logistic regression analyses, we found the key factors affecting patients’ adoption pattern were Usage Intention (OR, 9.43, 95%C.I., 5.87-15.16), Perceived Usefulness (OR, 1.60; 95%C.I., 1.11-2.29) and Subjective Norm (OR, 1.47; 95%C.I., 1.21-1.78).


Higher Usage Intentions, Perceived Usefulness and Subjective Norm of patients were found to be the key factors influencing PHR adoption. Thus, we suggest that government and hospitals should promote the potential usefulness of PHR, and physicians should encourage patients' to adopt the PHR.

Personal Health Records (PHR); Technology Acceptance Model (TAM); Adoption, Behavior, Taiwan