Evaluation of Norwegian cancer hospitals web sites and explorative survey among cancer patients on their use of the internet

J Norum
Journal of Medical Internet Research 2001, 3 (4): E30

BACKGROUND: Hospital homepages should provide comprehensive information on the hospital's services, such as departments and treatments available, prices, waiting time, leisure facilities, and other information important for patients and their relatives. Norway, with its population of approximately 4.3 million, ranks among the top countries globally for its ability to absorb and use technology. It is unclear to what degree Norwegian hospitals and patients use the Internet for information about health services.

OBJECTIVES: This study was undertaken to evaluate the quality of the biggest Norwegian cancer hospitals Web sites and to gather some preliminary data on patients use of the Internet.

METHODS: In January 2001, we analyzed Web sites of 5 of the 7 biggest Norwegian hospitals treating cancer patients using a scoring system. The scoring instrument was based on recommendations developed by the Norwegian Central Information Service for Web sites and reflects the scope and depth of service information offered on hospital Web pages. In addition, 31 cancer patients visiting one hospital-based medical oncologist were surveyed about their use of the Internet.

RESULTS: Of the 7 hospitals, 5 had a Web site. The Web sites differed markedly in quality. Types of information included - and number of Web sites that included each type of information - were, for example: search option, 1; interpreter service, 2; date of last update, 2; postal address, phone number, and e-mail service, 3; information in English, 2. None of the Web sites included information on waiting time or prices. Of the 31 patients surveyed, 12 had personal experience using the Internet and 4 had searched for medical information. The Internet users were significantly younger (mean age 47.8 years, range 28.4-66.8 years) than the nonusers (mean age 61.8 years, range 33.1-90.0 years) (P = 0.007).

CONCLUSIONS: The hospitals Web sites offer cancer patients and relatives useful information, but the Web sites were not impressive.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Trending Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.


Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"