Informed choice? English- and French-speakers’ use of the Canadian Health Network

Date created: 
2007
Keywords: 
Internet – social aspects
Health promotion
Patient education
Literacy
Health policy Canada
Health information
Internet
Information seeking
Use
Health promotion
‘informed patient’
Abstract: 

Few studies of the ways patients and consumers seek health information have investigated use of web portals or French- and English-speakers’ experiences understanding and using web-based health information. This study investigated the policy assumptions underlying the Canadian Health Network (CHN) web portal through discourse analysis and a focus group with portal managers. Interviews were conducted with French- and English-speaking users to understand how the CHN fit in their practices of information seeking and use. This study found that the policy discourse assumed the CHN would improve access to health information and personal responsibility for health and health care decision-making. Interviewees accessed the CHN, among other websites and non-internet resources, to expand their understanding of health issues, participate more actively in their health care and support other people’s understanding of health issues. French-speakers faced additional constraints to understanding health information as they crossed linguistic, cultural and jurisdictional boundaries on the web.

Description: 
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Language: 
English
Document type: 
Thesis
Rights: 
Copyright remains with the author
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
E
Department: 
School of Communication - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Thesis (M.A.)
Statistics: