Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Health Information - Googling for Guidance

According to the Pew Internet Health Online 2013 report, while "offline" assistance via health care providers is still the primary route for treatment, information and guidance, almost 60% of adult Internet users have also looked online for health information in the past year. Key findings of the study include:

  • One in three American adults have gone online to figure out a medical condition
  • Clinicians are a central resource for information or support during serious health episodes — and the care and conversation take place mostly offline
  • Eight in 10 online health inquiries start at a search engine
  • Half of health information searches are on behalf of someone else
  • One in four people seeking health information online have hit a pay wall
  • The social life of health information is a low-key but steady presence in American life

Instead of just relying on Google for health information online, be sure to consult Fauquier County Public Library's website, which has a dedicated area for online health resources. Here you'll find vetted health-related information from premium databases such as the Gale Health & Wellness Resource Center and Health Reference Center Academic, as well as links to free, trustworthy websites from the National Institutes of Health and the Mayo Clinic.

~ Alison -- Electronic Resources Librarian

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