A model for adoption of mobile health technologies to improve child nutrition practices in resource-constrained environments
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Malnutrition contributes to about half (45%) of the deaths of children under the age of five years in developing countries. Studies reveal that malnutrition is aggravated by a lack of nutritional information, particularly in rural areas. This research aimed to create a model for the adoption of mobile health technologies to improve child nutrition practices in resource-constrained environments. The study was set to determine the factors for the successful adoption of mobile health technologies, propose the model that best supports the adoption of mobile health technologies, and evaluate the model. A descriptive survey was conducted to gather the factors for a model using interviews and questionnaires. Thematic data analysis and Partial Least Squares, a structural equation modeling technique was used to analyze the data. The results obtained from the field study were used to extend the unified theory of acceptance and use of technology model to come up with the model that adequately explains the use of mobile health technologies to enhance child nutrition practices in resource-constrained environments. The derived model was evaluated by using the questionnaires which were provided to the health experts. The results showed that all the independent variables of performance expectancy, effort expectancy, social influence, facilitating conditions, hedonic motivation, price value, management support, cultural influence, awareness, and training were positively related to the behaviour intention to use mHealth technology. The findings in the study also indicated that awareness and training is the most significant factor for the successful adoption of mHealth technology to enhance child nutrition practices, followed by hedonic motivation, price value, performance expectancy, social, and cultural influence. The model combines the tested strength of the unified theory of acceptance and use of technology with the variables suitable for the adoption of mobile health technologies to enhance child nutrition practices in resource-constrained environments. Therefore, the model is generic and can be adopted by other developing countries with similar contexts as Uganda.