Prevalence of Internet usage and access to health information among dental school outpatients

Aydin U., Ozturk M., Kirbiyik S.

TELEMEDICINE JOURNAL AND E-HEALTH, vol.10, no.4, pp.444-448, 2004 (Journal Indexed in SCI) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 10 Issue: 4
  • Publication Date: 2004
  • Doi Number: 10.1089/tmj.2004.10.444
  • Page Numbers: pp.444-448


The aim of this study was to investigate the prevalence of Internet access and use among dental school outpatients to evaluate the type of information they seek and their views regarding health- related information. A total of 400 consecutive outpatients were surveyed. A questionnaire was used to collect data on demographic characteristics and Internet use. Users were asked about the frequency and location of their Internet access. Access to health- related information and medical and dental topics of interest was recorded. Participants expressed their opinions on the usefulness of the information and the improvements that might be needed. A total of 33.0% of the participants were Internet users. Those in the 15- to 24- year age group were male, unmarried, and at school and were much more likely to use the Internet than their counterparts. Twelve percent of the users were seeking online health information. Dental information was sought by 16.7% ( n = 8) of online health seekers. Those in the 25- to 34- year age group were married, employed, and who have a university degree and were much more likely to seek health information on the Internet than their counterparts. Currently, persons seeking online health information in this population in Turkey are a small minority. It is important to respond to the specific health needs of the Internet users to post accurate information.