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Article

Social and Demographic Patterns of Health-Related Internet Use Among Adults in the United States: A Secondary Data Analysis of the Health Information National Trends Survey

1
Department of Community Health and Social Medicine, CUNY School of Medicine, New York, NY 10031, USA
2
Department of Medicine, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York, NY 10027, USA
3
Department of Community Health Sciences, SUNY Downstate Health Sciences University, Brooklyn, NY 11203, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(18), 6856; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17186856
Received: 16 August 2020 / Revised: 16 September 2020 / Accepted: 17 September 2020 / Published: 19 September 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Digital Intervention and Self-Management)
National surveys of U.S. adults have observed significant increases in health-related internet use (HRIU), but there are documented disparities. The study aims to identify social and demographic patterns of health-related internet use among U.S. adults. Using data from the Health Information National Trends Survey (HINTS) 4 cycle 3 and HINTS 5 cycle 1, we examined HRIU across healthcare, health information seeking, and participation on social media. Primary predictors were gender, race/ethnicity, age, education, income, and nativity with adjustments for smoking and survey year. We used multivariable logistic regression with survey weights to identify independent predictors of HRIU. Of the 4817 respondents, 43% had used the internet to find a doctor; 80% had looked online for health information. Only 20% had used social media for a health issue; 7% participated in an online health support group. In multivariable models, older and low SES participants were significantly less likely to use the internet to look for a provider, use the internet to look for health information for themselves or someone else, and less likely to use social media for health issues. Use of the internet for health-related purposes is vast but varies significantly by demographics and intended use. View Full-Text
Keywords: mobile health; health communication; internet use mobile health; health communication; internet use
MDPI and ACS Style

Calixte, R.; Rivera, A.; Oridota, O.; Beauchamp, W.; Camacho-Rivera, M. Social and Demographic Patterns of Health-Related Internet Use Among Adults in the United States: A Secondary Data Analysis of the Health Information National Trends Survey. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17, 6856. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17186856

AMA Style

Calixte R, Rivera A, Oridota O, Beauchamp W, Camacho-Rivera M. Social and Demographic Patterns of Health-Related Internet Use Among Adults in the United States: A Secondary Data Analysis of the Health Information National Trends Survey. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2020; 17(18):6856. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17186856

Chicago/Turabian Style

Calixte, Rose, Argelis Rivera, Olutobi Oridota, William Beauchamp, and Marlene Camacho-Rivera. 2020. "Social and Demographic Patterns of Health-Related Internet Use Among Adults in the United States: A Secondary Data Analysis of the Health Information National Trends Survey" International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 17, no. 18: 6856. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17186856

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