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Abstract

Introduction

The levels of chronic disease amongst the Qatari population have increased dramatically in recent years. Whilst these diseases are highly prevalent in Qatar, awareness surrounding the recognition of symptoms and the disease itself are limited. Sourcing accurate information about health conditions is crucial. It is currently unknown how Qatari people source information concerning health problems for themselves as well as others. This information, however, is essential for our understanding so that strategies can be derived to assist the population concerning the various health problems that are encountered. We explored how and where the Qatari population seek information regarding health problems.

Methods

Ethical approval was gained from Hamad Medical Corporation/Weill Cornell Medical College in Qatar Joint Institutional Review Board (14-00017). Adult Qataris 18–85 y were approached at different sites, including educational establishments and shopping malls, and asked to complete an anonymous questionnaire to ascertain basic information concerning demographics, health status, and utilisation of health care services during the past year and sources of health information that individuals access. The data were analysed using SPSS version 23.

Results

A total of 394 questionnaires were completed, with 62% respondents being women. More men rated their health as very good compared to women (60.1% and 53.1%, respectively). However, this was not statistically significant X2(3, 387) =  5.7, p =  0.319.

Overall, more people in Qatar used the Internet as a source of health information (71.1%) than in previous studies in the USA (23.8–53.5%)(1,2). This difference between US and Qatar percentages can be explained by the fast diffusion of Internet use and overall wide spread of technology usage among Qataris (3).

More women (78.7%) than men (60.8%) used the Internet as a source of seeking information about health (X2 (1, 72) =  14.8, p

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/content/papers/10.5339/qfarc.2016.HBPP2760
2016-03-21
2020-10-24
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