Medical information on the web

In this day and age with computer technology what it is, patients have more and more access to medical information on the web.  Unfortunately, not all the information they access is reliable.  Many patient reference materials state “facts” that are unfounded.  Sometimes the website is sponsored by a vendor with biased information.  At times, the availability of medical information on the internet can help a patient make educated decisions but at other times it can just confuse the issues and sometimes can result in interference in the patient’s medical care.  Part of our patient education needs to be to provide the patient with reliable resources to educate themselves.  One way of doing this is for physician’s websites to have links to reliable medical information. For example, a physician who sees patients with diabetes could include a link to the American Diabetes Association, a well-known, reliable source of diabetes information.  In this way, the patient is still able to access additional information and research about their condition without having to sift through misinformation.

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