Pew calls them "e-patients", people who look for health information online. And their numbers are growing. For librarians, it's one of those bear/Pope observations.
Excerpt: When asked, "Now thinking about all the sources you turn to when you need information or assistance in dealing with health or medical issues, please tell me if you use any of the following sources..."
- 86% of all adults ask a health professional, such as a doctor.
- 68% of all adults ask a friend or family member.
- 57% of all adults use the internet.
- 54% use books or other printed reference material.
- 33% contact their insurance provider.
- 5% use another source not mentioned in the list.