eHealth as a challenge to ‘expert’ power: a focus group study of internet use for health information and management

Donnelly, Louise S. and Shaw, Rachel L. and Van den Akker, Olga (2008) eHealth as a challenge to ‘expert’ power: a focus group study of internet use for health information and management. Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine, 101 (10). pp. 501-506. ISSN 0141-0768

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Abstract

Objective: To investigate current use of the internet and eHealth amongst adults.

Design: Focus groups were conducted to explore participants' attitudes to and reasons for health internet use.

Main outcome measures: The focus group data were analysed and interpreted using thematic analysis.

Results: Three superordinate themes exploring eHealth behaviours were identified: decline in expert authority, pervasiveness of health information on the internet and empowerment. Results showed participants enjoyed the immediate benefits of eHealth information and felt empowered by increased knowledge, but they would be reluctant to lose face-to-face consultations with their GP.

Conclusions: Our findings illustrate changes in patient identity and a decline in expert authority with ramifications for the practitioner–patient relationship and subsequent implications for health management more generally.

Item Type: Article
Research Areas: A. > School of Science and Technology > Psychology
A. > School of Science and Technology > Psychology > Applied Health Psychology group
ISI Impact: 1
Item ID: 3145
Useful Links:
Depositing User: Devika Mohan
Date Deposited: 19 Nov 2009 07:07
Last Modified: 26 Mar 2015 15:55
URI: http://eprints.mdx.ac.uk/id/eprint/3145

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