How health information is received by diabetic patients?

Adv Biomed Res. 2015 Jun 4:4:126. doi: 10.4103/2277-9175.158047. eCollection 2015.


Background: Knowledge of correct information-seeking behavior by the patients can provide health specialists and health information specialists with valuable information in improving health care. This study aimed to investigate the passive receipt and active seeking of health information by diabetic patients.

Materials and methods: A survey method was used in this research on 6426 diabetic patients of whom 362 patients were selected by a no percentage stratified random sampling. The Longo information-seeking behavior questionnaire was used to collect data and they were analyzed by SPSS 20 software.

Results: The most common information source by diabetic patients was practitioners (3.12). The minimum usage among the information sources were from charity organizations and emergency phone lines with a usage of close to zero. The amount of health information gained passively from each source has the lowest average of 4.18 and usage of this information in making health decision has the highest average score of 5.83. Analysis of the data related to active seeking of information showed that knowledge of available medical information from each source has the lowest average score of 3.95 and ability in using the acquired information for making medical decisions has the highest average score of 5.28. The paired t-test showed that differences between passive information receipt (41.68) and active information seeking (39.20) considered as statistically significant (P < 0.001).

Conclusion: Because diabetic patients are more passive information receivers than active information seekers, the health information must be distributed by passive means to these patients. In addition, information-seeking behavior during different time periods should be investigated; to identify more effective distribution of health information.

Keywords: Active information seeking; Iran; Isfahan; diabetes; health information-seeking behavior; passive information receipt.