Skip to content Skip to navigation

More Than One-Third of Patients Go Online to Diagnose, Research Says

January 16, 2013
by Rajiv Leventhal
| Reprints

Historically, people have always tried to answer their health questions at home and made personal choices about whether and when to consult a clinician. Many have now added the internet to their personal health toolbox, according to new research published by the Pew Research Center's Internet & American Life Project.

Thirty-five percent of U.S. adults say that at one time or another they have gone online specifically to try to figure out what medical condition they or someone else might have.  Pew labeled these patients “online diagnosers.” And 72 percent of internet users say they looked online for health information of one kind or another within the past year.  This includes searches related to serious conditions, general information searches and searches for minor health problems.  Pew has labeled these patients “online health seekers.”

Nearly half—46 percent—of online diagnosers said the information found online led them to think they needed the attention of a medical professional, and 41 percent said a medical professional confirmed their diagnosis.

Moreover, women are more likely than men to go online to figure out a possible diagnosis. Other groups that have a high likelihood of doing so include younger people, white adults, those who live in households earning $75,000 or more and those with a college degree or advanced degrees, the study says.

The results reported come from a nationwide survey of 3,014 adults living in the U.S. Telephone interviews were conducted by landline and cell phone. The survey was conducted by Princeton Survey Research Associates International.

Topics

News

Sansum Clinic Recognized for Reaching HIMSS Stage 6 for Ambulatory EHR

August 23, 2016
Santa Barbara, Calif.-based Sansum Clinic has been recognized for achieving Stage 6 on the EMR Adoption Model, or EMRAM, as designated by HIMSS Analytics.

ONC Releases 2017 Draft Interoperability Standards Advisory

August 23, 2016
The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) has issued its draft Interoperability Standards Advisory (ISA) for 2017 for public comment.

Survey: Hospital IT Execs Fearful of Mobile Security Threats

August 23, 2016
More than eight in 10 (82 percent) hospitals surveyed by Spyglass Consulting Group expressed grave concerns about their ability to support and protect mobile devices, patient data, and the hospital’s technology infrastructure as a result of the growing threat of cybersecurity attacks.

CommonWell Members Give Patients Access to their Health Data

August 23, 2016
The CommonWell Health Alliance announced today that members will be giving patients access to their health data for the first time via the CommonWell network.

Southern California Health Centers Receive $1.5 Million HHS Grant to Improve Health IT Adoption

August 22, 2016
Health Centers Partners of Southern California, a consortium of community health centers in San Diego, Riverside and Imperial counties, received a $1.5 million federal grant to improve patient care through the use of technology.

HHS Delivers Telehealth Progress Report to Congress

August 22, 2016
Following up on a Congressional request, HHS has issued a report providing an update on the department’s current telehealth efforts, largely focusing on how delivery system reform initiatives may increase its use.

Apple Has Acquired Personal Health Data Startup Gliimpse

August 22, 2016
Apple has expanded its investment in digital health with the acquisition of personal health data startup Gliimpse, which occurred earlier this year, according to Fast Company reports.

Mayo Clinic Expands Emergency Telemedicine Services

August 22, 2016
Rochester, Minn.-based Mayo Clinic is implementing a new telemedicine strategy and will converge its emergency telemedicine practice in order to provide scalable, standardized services across its nationwide telemedicine enterprise.

OCR Announces Initiative to Focus Investigations on Smaller Data Breaches

August 22, 2016
As healthcare organizations of all sizes are impacted by data theft, ransomware and privacy violations, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office for Civil Rights (OCR) plans to devote more resources to investigating smaller breaches.

CMS to End ICD-10 Grace Period on October 1

August 22, 2016
After announcing last year that it would not deny Medicare physician claims for 12 months as long as the ICD-10 code was “from the right family,” the CMS has said that the grace period for healthcare providers will expire on Oct.1, 2016.

Study: Socioeconomic Digital Divide Remains in Personal Health Record Use

August 19, 2016
More patients are using personal health records (PHRs), yet there are socioeconomic disparities in the adoption of PHRs and patient portals to access health records, according to a study published in the American Journal of Managed Care.

NIH Survey Respondents Give Positive Feedback to Precision Medicine Cohort Program

August 19, 2016
A majority of respondents to a recent National Institutes of Health (NIH) survey said they would likely participate in the NIH's Precision Medicine cohort program.

HHS Awards $100 Million to Improve Health Center Quality

August 19, 2016
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has awarded more than $100 million in grants to 1,304 health centers to invest in healthcare quality improvement efforts that engages patients and improves care coordination.

Cleveland’s University Hospitals Names CIO

August 19, 2016
Cleveland-based University Hospitals (UH) has hired Joy Grosser as chief information officer. She will join UH Sept. 12 after serving as vice president and CIO at 17-hospital UnityPoint Health in West Des Moines, Iowa, for six years.

Five University of Maryland Medical System Hospitals Reach EMRAM Stage 6

August 18, 2016
Five University of Maryland Medical System hospitals have achieved Stage 6 on the EMR Adoption Model, or EMRAM, as designated by HIMSS Analytics.

Pages