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Friends:

A colleague at UW alerted me to this report. He say's it's "must reading"

On the California Health Care Foundation Webpage...
Proceed with Caution: A Report on the Quality of Health Information on the
Internet
http://ehealth.chcf.org/view.cfm?section=Industry&itemID=3973

From the CHCF Webpage:

"... little is known about whether the information on the Web is
sufficiently complete and accurate to support consumer
decision-making. In response to these concerns, the California
HealthCare Foundation commissioned RAND Health to design
and conduct a comprehensive study to describe and evaluate
health information available on the Internet. The study is the first to
evaluate both English-language and Spanish-language search
engines and Web sites.

The study addressed these questions:

        1.What type of information is identified by search engines
          about specific health conditions and how efficient are
          search engines as tools for locating health
          information?
        2.How comprehensive, accurate, and current is the
          information presented on selected health Web sites?
        3.What is the level of literacy required to understand
          the information provided by these sites?

The full report is available in PDF format linked from the bottom of this
URL: http://ehealth.chcf.org/view.cfm?section=Industry&itemID=3973 . A
chartpack is available as well as some Webcasting content.

Regards,

Laura Larsson
NLM Informatics Fellow, OHSU
and
Clinical Faculty
Health Services, University of Washington
[log in to unmask]
listowner: PHNUTR-L, PHNURSES, PNWHEALTH, PHSW, HSR-L +
http://courses.washington.edu/hs590a/hs590a.html

"The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and
write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn. "  Alvin Toffler