E-health consumers less satisfied

More than 100 million consumers sought health information on the Internet over the past year, up from 70 million in 1999, according to a poll conducted by Harris Interactive. At the same time, consumer satisfaction with health sites actually fell.

There is a gap between the services offered and consumer demands.

  • Only 56 percent of poll respondents said the Internet helped them understand their health problems, compared with 73 percent in 1999.

  • Only 41 percent said the Internet helped them manage their health care, compared with 60 percent last year.

  • And only 29 percent said the Web helped them communicate with their doctor, down from 51 percent.

    A majority of e-health consumers (58 percent) weren't confident in the sites' ability to protect their privacy.

    Consumers want better data and more direct interaction with health-care providers – including the ability to communicate with doctors online. More than 80 percent said they wanted e-mail reminders for preventive care based on their medical history and follow-up e-mails after office visits.

  • The good news is almost a third of the 750 doctors surveyed now have a website for their practice, up from just 19 percent last year.

  • And they are referring their patients to the Web more often, referring academic and research institutions and government sites over commercial sites.

  • However, only 35 percent of doctors said they were confident of the data on health-related Internet sites.

    Source: Laura Landro, More People Are Using Internet Health Sites, But Fewer Are Satisfied, Health Journal, Wall Street Journal, December 29, 2000.

    For WSJ text (requires subscription) http://interactive.wsj.com/articles/SB978042749198354818.htm

    For more on Health Issues http://www.ncpa.org/pi/health/hedex.html
  • Help FMF promote the rule of law, personal liberty, and economic freedom become an individual member / donor HERE ... become a corporate member / donor HERE