What kind of cancer information do Internet users need?
- First Online:
The Internet becomes one of the most effective communication media in healthcare. This study aimed to evaluate the cancer information sources and the needs of various types of Internet users.
We conducted a survey on the National Cancer Information Center website from April 2007 to December 2007. Of the 170,746 visitors, 507 responded to the survey, and the data were analyzed according to self-identified user types.
The participants identified themselves as patients (17%), caregivers (32%), healthcare professionals (21%), or general public (30%). Different user groups looked for different cancer information. Totally, 72.1% patients and 82% caregivers wanted the information about treatment, and 71.3% of healthcare professionals and 88.2% of the general public wanted the information related to ‘prevention & diagnosis.’ Healthcare professionals had a higher need for “statistics & research” information compared to other Internet user groups. The Internet was reported as the most common source of cancer information for all user groups.
The type of cancer information needed and the usefulness of the information acquired on the Internet varied among the different types of user groups, suggesting that Web-based cancer information should be tailored to each type of user.
KeywordsCancer information Information need Information source Internet
- 14.Top 20 countries with the highest number of Internet users. Internet world stats: usage and population statistics. http://www.internetworldstats.com/top20.htm (assessed July 13 2010)
- 16.William H, Dutton, Ellen J, Helsper (2007) The Internet in Britain: 2007. Oxford Internet Institute, University of Oxford City, Oxford, pp 1–83Google Scholar
- 18.OECD (2008) The future of the Internet economy: a statistical profile. OECD, Seoul, South KoreaGoogle Scholar
- 19.Korea Communications Commission NIDAoK (2009) Survey on the Internet usage executive summary. Seoul, South Korea, pp 1–40Google Scholar
- 23.Kim GY, Huh HK (2002) Information needs on patients with cancer in Korea. J Kor Acad Soc Adult Nurs 14:135–143Google Scholar