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Online health seeking

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Director Lee Rainie gave a keynote address in Newport, R.I. to a conference of the North Atlantic Health Science Libraries. More: …

Director Lee Rainie gave a keynote address in Newport, R.I. to a conference of the North Atlantic Health Science Libraries. More: http://pewinternet.org/Presentations/2010/Oct/North-Atlantic-Health-Science-Libraries.aspx


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  • 1. Online health seeking How Social Networks Can be Health Communities NAHSL Conference - Libraries in Balance October 25, 2010 Newport, R.I. Lee Rainie: Director, Pew Internet Project
  • 2.  
  • 3. October 22, 2010 Apology Revolution 1 Internet and broadband
  • 4.  
  • 5.  
  • 6. Impact of internet revolution
    • Volume, velocity, variety of info increase
      • Long tail, passions/distractions
    • The “people formerly known as the patients/audience” become publishers and broadcasters – and pundits/critics
      • 2/3 of online adults and 3/4 of online teens are content creators
    • The “Daily Me” and “Daily Us” emerges as people customize info flows
      • >50% of adults customize digital info
  • 7. October 22, 2010 Apology Revolution 2 Wireless connectivity
  • 8. Cell phone owners – 85% adults 96% 90% 85% 58%
  • 9. Mobile internet connectors – 57% adults 62% 59% 55%
  • 10. New cell and wireless realities
    • More than 2/3 of adults and 3/4 of teens use the cloud
    • Web vs. apps struggle: 35% have apps; 24% use apps
    • Features used by cell owners
      • 76% take pictures
      • 74% are texters (text overtakes talk in frequency in 2009)
      • 39% browse internet
      • 34% are email users
      • 34% record videos
      • 34% play games
      • 33% play music
      • 30% are IM-ers
      • 7% participate in video calls
  • 11. Impact of mobile revolution
    • Information, media, people available anytime, anywhere, any device
      • Venues and availability of people and info shift
    • People “control the playlist and “make the appointments” with media
    • People’s attention to info and to others shifts
      • Truncates – “continuous partial attention”
      • Elongates – deep dives into subjects
  • 12. October 22, 2010 Apology Revolution 3 Social networking
  • 13.  
  • 14. Impact of social network revolution
    • Tech social networking combines with other historic trends to transform social networks
      • Affluence and affordable technology, mobility, family composition and roles, labor markets/free agency, rise of DIY politics and religion
    • What’s changed in social networks
      • Composition - tightly-bound, close groups give way to more loosely-knit, diverse networks – more segmented and layered
      • Way people use them – more important in stressful environments
    • Social networks are more vivid and tied to creation of information/media
      • Merger of “real world” and “new media world” in a way that makes media more personal = social media
  • 15.
    • Internet
      • Empowered and engaged – 61% of all adults get health info online (80% of internet users)
      • Participatory e-patients – 60% consume social media; 29% have contributed content
      • Crowdsourced via e-patients: 19% consult rankings/reviews of providers (5% post them); 18% consult reviews of hospitals (4% post them)
    Each of the revolutions has changed health care searches and interactions (1)
  • 16.
    • Mobile
      • Real-time – 17% use mobile phone for health info; 7% have health apps on handhelds
      • Over-represented among young, minorities, urban residents, upper SES
      • NO FEMALE/MALE DIFFERENCES
    Each of the revolutions has changed health care searches and interactions (2)
  • 17.
    • Social network
      • “ Last search”: 48% for others; 36% for self; 11% for both
      • Read others’ commentaries: 34%
      • Find others who have same condition: 18%
      • Get info from social networking site: 11% SNS users
      • Get info from Twitter: 8% of Twitter users
    Each of the revolutions has changed health care searches and interactions (3)
  • 18. How online searches affect decisions (1)
    • 60% of e-patients say the information found online affected a decision about how to treat an illness or condition .
    • 56% say it changed their overall approach to maintaining their health or the health of someone they help take care of.
    • 53% say it lead them to ask a doctor new questions , or to get a second opinion from another doctor.
  • 19.
    • 49% say it changed the way they think about diet, exercise, or stress management .
    • 38% say it affected a decision about whether to see a doctor.
    • 38% say it changed the way they cope with a chronic condition or manage pain.
    How online searches affect decisions (2)
  • 20. What technology has done to social networks and the role librarians can play in them
    • Made it possible for experts like librarians to become “nodes” in people’s networks that can help them solve problems and make decisions
    • Allowed for immediate, spontaneous creation of networks that can include librarians
    • Given people a sense that there are more “friends” their networks like librarians that they can access when they have needs
    June 25, 2010
  • 21. The networked world of e-patients
    • What providers are good for
    • Diagnosis / treatments
    • Prescriptions
    • Recommendation for specialist
    • Recommendation for hospital
    • Info on alternative treatments
    • What others are good for
    • Emotional support
    • Practical advice for day-to-day coping
    • Recommendation for quick remedy for everyday issue
  • 22. Implications for librarians – 1
    • Reasons to re-vision your role in a world where much has changed
    • - Everyone’s access to information is easier
    • Value of information is in flux
    • Curating information means more than maintaining collections
    • Creating media is easier – so, networked creators can be your allies
    • Established scientific methods are being challenged and there is a public yearning for trusted “tour guides”
    June 25, 2010
  • 23. Implications for librarians – 2
    • You can help teach new literacies
    • - screen literacy - graphics and symbols
    • - navigation literacy
    • - connections and context literacy
    • - skepticism
    • - value of contemplative time
    • - how to create content
    • - ethical behavior in new world
    June 25, 2010
  • 24. What social networks do for patients: Why librarians can be “nodes”
    • Attention – act as sentries
      • alerts, social media interventions, pathways through new influencers
    • Assessment – act as trusted, wise companion
      • help assess the accuracy of info, timeliness of info, transparency and rigor of info
    • Action – act as helpful producers/enablers
      • help give people outlets for expression, interpretation of their creations
  • 25. Good news about new info ecology
    • Have you or has anyone you know been HELPED by following medical advice or health information found on the internet?
    • Major help – 10%
    • Moderate help – 20%
    • Minor help – 11%
    • No help – 50%
    • Don’t know – 4%
    • Have you or has anyone you know been HARMED by following medical advice or health information found on the internet?
    • Major harm – 1%
    • Moderate harm – 1%
    • Minor harm – 1%
    • No harm – 94%
    • Don’t know – 3%
    41% 3%
  • 26. Be not afraid