Health Care Slideshow: Social Medicine: Is the Internet Transforming Healthcare?By Don Reisinger | Posted 05-13-2011
18 percent of all U.S. Internet users have gone to the Web to find people who have similar ailments.
23 percent of U.S.-based Internet users who suffer from a chronic disease have used to the Internet to find others going through the same issue.
Even though the Internet is useful to Americans, 70 percent of adults say they still go to a health professional to get "information, care, or support" for what ails them.
Those looking for information on "weight loss or gain, pregnancy, or quitting smoking," are most likely to surf the Web.
When Americans want an "accurate medical diagnosis," 91 percent said they will go to a doctor or nurse.
Concern for others is one of the more common reasons people surf the Web for health information; 26 percent of those who are caring for someone with an illness look to the Internet to find information.
In the middle of a "medical crisis," people try to find information wherever they can; 85 percent say they take to the Web to learn more about the issue.
Internet users over age 65 are unlikely to look up information about a medical condition online. In fact, just 10 percent of seniors have done so.
When the health concern involves technical issues, professionals are the preferred resource. When the concern involves personal issues of how to cope with a health issue or get quick relief, then non-professionals were preferred by most patients.