A new study finds that in 2007, 56 percent of American adults—more than 122 million people—sought information about a personal health concern, up from 38 percent in 2001. Use of all information sources rose substantially, with the Internet leading the way. Consumers who actively researched health concerns widely reported positive impacts: More than half said the information changed their overall approach to maintaining their health, and four in five said that the information helped them to better understand how to treat an illness or condition.
The report, “Striking Jump in Consumers Seeking Health Care Information” (Tracking Report No. 20) is authored by Ha T. Tu and Genna Cohen. It was published in August 2008 by Center for Studying Health System Change.