Online Health Information – In The Event You Trust It?
You or a family member is recently identified as having a significant health problem. Or maybe physician has prescribed a brand new medication and you are worried about negative effects. Or else you need surgery and wish to know what to anticipate. What now ?? Based on the Pew Research Center, if you are like 80% from the Online users available, you’ve searched for health-related information online. But type “cancer” right into a internet search engine and you will get over 306,000,000 (yes, million!) results. Where would you begin? And may you trust that which you find? Here are a few ideas to help you.
Factors to consider inside a Legitimate Health Site
To begin with, exactly what does the URL or website address finish in? Whether it’s a.gov (government site),.org (organization’s site), or.edu (educational site), the data there’s that appears to be reliable. Whether it’s a.com, you will need to look closer. The website might be legitimate, but it could also be selling you something, or contain any mistakes.
Can there be a writer or organization connected using the website? If the author shows up, what exactly are their credentials?
Can there be “contact” information available — a previous address, telephone number or email? Can there be an “about us page?
Just when was the website last updated? May be the information current? (You might find these details near the foot of the page).
Find out if there’s an HONcode or similar symbol of accreditation. These websites must undergo an agreement process and follow certain ethical guidelines.
Be Very Careful…
Remember that the highlighted links that appear towards the top of the page or higher in the immediately after you’ve entered searching term are “backed” or compensated ads. They might be selling you something.
Exist lots of misspellings or poor grammar online? Look elsewhere.
Will the site promise a miraculous or quick “cure”? Could it be the only real site making these claims? Will it put lower traditional medicinal practises? When the claims made appear too good to be real — they most likely are.
Exist lots of promotions for the page? Or perhaps is it, actually, a blatant web page itself? That alone might not disqualify it. But proceed very carefully nonetheless and verify that which you read there.
And lastly, avoid using the data you discover on the web to identify or treat an illness or condition! Internet information isn’t a replacement for your doctor’s care, but ought to be used only to become knowledgeable and supplement information supplied by your physician.
Where In The Event You Begin?
The Nation’s Institute of Health, combined with the National Library of drugs (the world’s largest medical library) have created an internet site designed particularly for patients as well as their families. You will find info on over 800 illnesses and types of conditions, numerous studies, drugs and supplements, interactive tutorials, and “awesome tools” like health calculators. There’s also directories that will help you find doctors, dentists, along with other medical service providers, hospitals, organizations, organizations and far, a lot more. You will find easy-to-understand information that’s current and totally reliable. So next time you’ve got a health-related question, you might like to consider visiting MedlinePlus first. You might not need to look elsewhere!
Linda S. Johnson includes a Master’s Degree in Library Science and it has labored like a Medical Librarian for more than twenty years. Her passion helps patients as well as their families interact with the very best and many reliable health information online. However, it is usually suggested to meet with a healthcare professional prior to making changes of any sort based on Internet information or hearsay from others.