mHealth + Telehealth World 2014: Parks Associates Reveals 40% of U.S. Household Seek Health Info Online

mHealth + Telehealth World Parks Associates Reveals 40 percent of U.S. Household Seek Health Info OnlinePeople may joke about paying an office visit to “Dr. Google,” but it’s more true than most people know.

According to new research from Parks Associates, in the last 12 months, more than 38 percent of consumers in U.S. broadband households searched for health information online.

Another 27 percent used the Web sites of their care providers or insurers to obtain information, according to the Parks Associates report.

The implications of this trend — as well as current consumer attitudes and behaviors in connected health — are topics at “Increase Patient Adoption of Digital Health Practices to Promote Patient Self-Management” at mHealth + Telehealth World 2014 here in Boston.

An entire session at the gathering yesterday was devoted to helping payers and providers understand the benefits of telehealth and mHealth and develop strategies to encourage patient self-management and participation in new and existing programs.

Session participants included:

  • Nina M. Antoniotti, RN, MBA, PhD, Director of TeleHealth, Marshfield Clinic
  • Neil C. Evans, MD, Co-Director, Connected Health, Department of Veteran Affairs
  • Maulik D. Majmudar, MD, Associate Director, Healthcare Transformation Lab, Massachusetts General Hospital
  • Sean Penwell, MD, Chief Medical Officer, SeeChange Health Insurance

The three-day mHealth + Telehealth World, at which mHealthWatch has been in attendance since Tuesday, is designed for healthcare executives interested in learning how to utilize telehealth programs most efficiently, as well as to provide information on what health practices can improve patient outcomes.

Parks Associates’ health analyst team recently addressed the health and wellness aspects of the wearables market during the industry webcast “Engaging Consumers with Connected Health Technologies.” In the webcast, available for download at the Parks Associates website, the analysts highlighted consumer research to inform best practices for engaging different types of digital health consumers and facilitating improved care outcomes.

Parks Associates’ digital health research makes it clear that among U.S. broadband households in the past 12 months:

  • 38% of consumers looked up health information online
  • 27% used their care provider’s or insurer’s website
  • 26% used a website to make an appointment, check lab results, or manage prescriptions
  • 25% used a health app
  • 22% used a device to track their health patterns
  • 22% stored health information electronically
  • 20% communicated electronically with a healthcare or health insurance professional
  • 13% participated in an online support group

We’re told that Parks Associates will host the inaugural Connected Health Summit: Engaging Consumers later this summer (September 4-5th) in San Diego, which will feature keynotes from Ascension Health, Humana Wellness, Kaiser, Qualcomm Life, and Walgreens.

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