A recent study from the Pew Research Centers shows that health information is one of the most frequently searched subjects on the internet.
Researchers from the Pew Internet Project and California HealthCare Foundation found that 80 percent of people look online for health information, which is the third most popular web-based pursuit, followed by email and using a search engine.
Furthermore, the study reveals that 44 percent of people look online for information about doctors and other health professionals. Meanwhile, 36 percent said they use the internet to seek data on hospitals or other medical facilities.
“The internet has become a go-to resource for most Americans, but some groups are still on the other side of the health information divide,” said Susannah Fox, author of the study. “Many people, particularly the most vulnerable populations, are not likely to see the most up-to-date information on drug recalls, food safety, and medical treatments.”
Officials added that due to the increased use of wireless internet, more young people, Latinos and African Americans are more likely to use mobile devices to gather information, which may include health advice.
Online systems that show individuals’ need for information about hospitals and what services they offer are becoming more widespread. As a result, more healthcare providers are seeking to hire people who have obtained a health information technology management degree to incorporate these into their facilities.