Thephrase ‘Don’t believe anything you read on the internet’ hasbecome a cliché. However, this is an important statement whichshould be held in high regard by anyone searching for information onthe internet. Web pages can be great sources of information when onewants to learn about a particular health condition or disease (Hu &Sundar, 2010). Some websites also offer relevant tips on how to stayhealthy. However, there are many other websites that providehealth-related information which is myths or half-truths. Therefore,it is important for one to assess the credibility of any websitebefore deciding to use it as a resource. Dolly Pham`s post providesan excellent example of how an individual can assess a web page.Dolly has done an excellent and in-depth analysis of websitesproviding information on diabetes. She has grouped the sources intoone that offers information for patients/consumers and the otherproviding information for the health personnel.
Theissues that Dolly has discussed are all important in assessing thecredibility of a website. She talks about the currency ofinformation, authors/owners of the websites and the contactinformation, purpose of the websites, the content of the websites,and ease of use. These are crucial elements in determining thecredibility of a website and the discussion offered clear informationon what makes the chosen websites good resources. For instance, sheexplains how non-profit or organizational websites are most reliable(Novella, 2010). Information got from such websites may be verybeneficial and doctors or nurses should encourage their patients toconduct their own research on specific things. However, it should benoted that the information from websites should not be used toreplace doctor’s advice (Jacobs, 2010). A consumer/patient shouldalways clarify information with their doctors especially if itcontradicts the doctor’s instructions.
Hu,Y., & Sundar, S. S. (2010). Effects of online health sources oncredibility and behavioral intentions. CommunicationResearch,37(1),105-132.
Jacobs,G. (2010). Sourcesof Medical Information for Non-medics and Non-scientists.March 18, 2010. Retrieved fromhttp://sciblogs.co.nz/code-for-life/2010/03/18/sources-for-medical-information-for-non-medics-and-non-scientists/
Novella.S. (2010). Reliabilityof Health Information on the Web.Science Based Medicine. July 14, 2010. Retrieved fromhttps://sciencebasedmedicine.org/reliability-of-health-information-on-the-web/