Consumers turning to the Internet first for health information (DUH)

KEY TAKEAWAY: Americans use the internet or mobile apps as their first source for information about specific health symptoms, conditions, diseases, or ailments. So comes this eye opening (cue sarcasm) from United Health Care.

The use of websites and mobile apps to research health care options is increasing, with 28 percent of respondents saying online resources are their first option when evaluating health symptoms or conditions.

Most people underestimated the role lifestyle choices play in premature chronic conditions, with many incorrectly attributing genetics as the primary cause of heart disease, stroke or diabetes.

A growing number of people (32 percent) said they have used the internet or mobile apps in the last year to comparison shop for medical services, but some still underestimated the cost of care .  Nearly 80 percent of respondents said the federal government should shift the Medicare program away from the traditional fee-for-service system to a model that emphasizes preventive care and rewards physicians for health outcomes.


There really is nothing new here. DRG has been reporting this information for years and perhaps United Health Care could have saved some money by following DRG online.  However, what I have found is that Baby Boomers are still very active online when it comes to health. To ignore this segment of online health is a mistake.

It’s also interesting to note that the CEO of United Health Care earned over $30 million in direct compensation last year.  Perhaps some of that money could have been used to really help patients rather than put out self promotional research that everyone could ignore.


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