University of Twente Student Theses


Online gezondheidsvaardigheden van reumapatiënten: welke problemen ervaren reumapatiënten bij computer- en internetgebruik?

Meenhuis, E. (2012) Online gezondheidsvaardigheden van reumapatiënten: welke problemen ervaren reumapatiënten bij computer- en internetgebruik?

[img] PDF
Abstract:Nowadays information is more exchanged throughout the internet. For people with a chronic disease such as rheumatism, it is important to require the right health information. To use health information in the right way, it is important that patients with rheumatic diseases require the right computer and internet skills and health literacy, also called eHealth literacy. Good eHealth literacy promotes self management. Untill now there are no valid instruments developed which measure eHealth literacy. Besides that there is little known about the problems people with rheumatic diseases experience while they are using the computer and internet. Aim The aim of this study was to examine the problems patients with rheumatic diseases experience, while they use the computer and internet to accomplish rheumatic related assignments. Further is examined if there is a relation between the Health literacy (the ability to read, understand and communicate about health information to make a good decision as regards health) and number of fulfilled assignments. Finally is examined if and how patients with rheumatic diseases use Health 2.0 in relation to their disease. Methods After a meeting of the Reuma Research Partners forum 12 participants have registered for participation in this study. By convenience sampling another 3 patients with rheumatic diseases were approached and included. This study consisted of a questionnaire and six practical assignments. The questionnaire consisted of questions about demographic characteristics, current internet use, practical problems by using a computer and Health literacy. The 6 practical assignments had the following topics: free assignment, buttonknowledge and navigation, symptoms of osteoarthritis, tips for buying shoes in connection with rheumatism, searching for a physical therapist in the neighbourhood with experience with rheumatism and search for tips against nausea of MTX-medication through a forum. The rheumatic related practical assignments were recorded by Morae recorder®. The video’s were analysed bottom-up by two independent researchers. Discussion between the researchers led to consensus of the terminology and classification of the problems. Results The group participants (n = 15) consisted of 80% women, whose average age was 56 years (SD = 10.5). The majority (60%) was high skilled, a few lower skilled, namely LBO, MBO or VMBO (all 13%). The observed problems were subdivided in 5 themes: ‘buttonknowledge’, ‘navigation’, ‘searching for information’, ‘relevance’ and ‘being critical about the information’. Every participant experienced one or more problems. The participants experienced problems with the use of the mouse (n = 8), closing the internet/screen (n = 9), use of hyperlinks (n = 8) and the menu (n = 10). As regards searching for information, participants experienced problems with formulating the right search query (n = 15) and were inaccurate (n = 12). As regards relevance, participants did not select the answer correctly (n = 14). Participants were not critical about the found information, because they did not look for multiple search results (n = 15) and they were not aware of the source of the information (n = 15). When assignments required more skills, more problems were observed at the themes: ‘searching for information’, ‘relevance’ and ‘being critical about the information’. Most of the time it are the same participants who did, did partially or did not accomplish the assignments. Of the higher skilled participants (n = 9) 4 participants accomplished all the assignments, but also 3 participants accomplished the assignments partially and even 2 participants did not accomplish the assignments. The participants who did not accomplish the assignments (n = 4) had little internet experience and 2 participants are low-skilled. There is evidence there are (very) weak correlations between Health literacy and the accomplishment of assignments. The correlation between the interactive/critical Health literacy and the assignment about ‘MTX-medication’ was significant (respectively 0.53 and 0.54). Health 2.0 applications were used by two participants. They used Health 2.0 especially for their own environment, not for their disease. Conclusion This study has highlighted the problems patients with rheumatic diseases experienced in computer and internet use. This is important so that healthcare providers can play a role in this to let patients with rheumatic diseases know what the best online sources of information are and how to use them. It is shown that there is a (very) weak positive relation between Health literacy and completing the assignments. Given the small number of participants, no conclusions can be drawn. Though it makes sense to bundle the problems that patients with rheumatic diseases patients experienced at computer and internet use in a course. The course should pay attention how to seek information, how to interprete them and how to take advantage of it for health. It is also important to discuss Health 2.0, because this is still little used by patients with rheumatic diseases and it may be important in relation to their disease. Finally will be seen whether such a course is the way to improve eHealth literacy of patients with rheumatic diseases in order to enlarge self management in relation to their disease.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:77 psychology
Programme:Psychology MSc (66604)
Link to this item:
Export this item as:BibTeX
HTML Citation
Reference Manager


Repository Staff Only: item control page