Recently the Pew Internet and American Life Project released results of a study it had conducted by Princeton Survey Research Associates between August 9th and September 13th of this year. The study looked at the use of cell phones to access health or medical information. Here’s what they found: 17% of cell phone users have used their phone to look up health or medical information. When the specific demographic of cell phone owners, ages 18 to 29, was looked at, that number jumped to 29%. The Pew Internet Project went on to find that 85% of American adults surveyed used a cell phone. The full report may be viewed here.
The take home message from this study? The Internet continues to be an ever growing presence in medicine; which presents both opportunities and risks for healthcare providers. Healthcare providers would be wise to develop strategies to respond to this ever growing impact of the Internet upon the medical profession.