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Internet Medical patient Education Michigan

  1. From the Department of Family Medicine, Wayne State University School of Medicine Detroit, MI 48201 (KLS, TR, JN, AVN)
  2. Department of Family Medicine, Henry Ford Health Systems, Detroit, MI 48202 (JM)
  3. Department of Family Medicine, North Oakland Medical Centers, Pontiac, MI 48341 (RS)
  1. Corresponding author: Kendra L. Schwartz, MD, MSPH, Department of Family Medicine, 101 E. Alexandrine, Wayne State University School of Medicine, Detroit, MI 48201 (E-mail: kensch{at}


We explored a diverse sample of family medicine patients’ use of the internet for health information. Primary objectives were to determine the extent of access to the Internet, and among those with access, the types of health information sought; how they search for that information; and how they assess the accuracy of the information. We also surveyed the physicians’ perceptions of their patients’ use of the Internet for health information. Of 1289 patients participating, 65% reported access to the internet; age, sex, race, education, and income were each significantly associated with internet access. A total of 74% of those with access had used the Internet to find health information for themselves or family members. Disease-specific information was most frequently sought, followed by medication information, and then information about nutrition and exercise. Patients determine website accuracy by the endorsement of the site by a government agency or a professional organization, their own perception of reliability of the website source, and the understandability of the information. Almost 90% attempted to verify the information they obtained. A majority had discussed website information with their physicians. The physicians (n = 92) underestimate the proportion of their patients who used the Internet for health information. A total of 36% of physicians said at least one patient per week brought in Internet health information, and 63% said they had suggested a specific website to their patients. Physicians need critical appraisal skills to determine whether information found by a patient is relevant to that patient’s condition and is based on the best available evidence. In addition, physicians directing patients to websites for health information must be confident that the site is maintained and updated by a reliable and credible source.

Disparities In Access To Palliative Care  — Health Affairs
Postgraduate training opportunities for all disciplines involved in providing palliative care, such as graduate medical education slots, should be increased.

Popular Q&A

What is the disadvantage of patient education in the medical field?

Patient education is an important part of modern medicine, and a very important part of medical practice today is making sure patients are informed of what their condition is, what is being done about it, and what is likely to happen. This is especially the case now in the era of patient-centered medicine, where the basic aim is to ensure patients have an understanding of the options available to them so they can make a decision, rather than the doctor controlling what happens.
One possible disadvantage is that if patients don't understand their education they may not make the right d…

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