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Mobile Advantage: Context and Immediacy in Health Information Seeking. Lisa Gualtieri, PhD, ScM Assistant Professor Dept . of Public Health and Community Medicine Tufts University School of Medicine Email: [email protected] Twitter: @ lisagualtieri. Health search is everywhere.

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Mobile advantage context and immediacy in health information seeking

Mobile Advantage: Context and Immediacy in Health Information Seeking

Lisa Gualtieri, PhD, ScM

Assistant Professor

Dept.of Public Health and Community Medicine

Tufts University School of Medicine

Email: [email protected]

Twitter: @lisagualtieri


Health search is everywhere
Health search is everywhere

  • Last night, in J.K. Rowling’s The Casual Vacancy, I read…

    • “She navigated away from the Parish Council message board and dropped into her favorite medical website, where she painstakingly entered the words "brain" and "death" in the search box.The suggestions were endless. Shirley scrolled through the possibilities…”


Agenda
Agenda

  • Past

  • Present

    • Focus on what mobile devices provide health seekers

  • Future


Past present and future of health information seeking behavior
Past, present, and future of health information seeking behavior

  • ?

  • “Democratization of location”

  • Democratization of medical information


Before looking at mobile health search need to ask if people use mobile devices
Before looking at mobile health search, need to ask if people use mobile devices

  • 321.7M wireless subscribers in US at end of 2011

    • Penetration of 101%

  • Smartphones now outnumber feature phones for the first time in the US

  • 1 in 8 internet page views are on smartphone or tablet, doubling in just a year

    • Comscore 9/12

  • Almost impossible to focus only on laptops and desktops when considering health information seeking


Not only are mobile devices used but they may eradicate the digital divide
Not only are mobile devices used but they may eradicate the “digital divide”

  • Smartphone ownership in US

    • 49% of Hispanics

    • 47% of African Americans

    • 42% of whites

    • Pew Internet & American Life Project 9/12


Some people are only using mobile devices
Some people are “digital divide”only using mobile devices

  • 34% of US household are wireless only

    • Stephen J. Blumberg, Julian V. Luke, Wireless Substitution: Early release of estimates from the National Health Interview Survey, July-December 2011, National Center for Health Statistics, 2012, http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/nhsr/nhsr061.pdf

  • But one device or many?


Some people are using lots of mobile devices
Some people are using “digital divide”lots of mobile devices

  • 40% of US households have 3 or more mobile devices in addition to their PCs & TVs

  • Differences in

    • Where mobile phones and tablets are used

    • Frequency of use


Where “digital divide”are mobile phones and tablets used?

Note that doctor’s office isn’t listed!

Base: 2,116 US online adults who own a mobile phone; Base: 549 US online adults who own a tablet

Source: North American Technographics Telecom And Devices Online Recontact Survey, Q3 2011 (US)


Tablets are used more frequently than smartphones with the exception of daily health content users
Tablets are used more frequently than “digital divide”smartphones with the exception of daily health content users

  • Source: comScore Custom Research – Jan/Feb 2010 Total n=1191 and Jan 2012 Total n=1033

  • How often do you use your device for health purposes?


What do mobile devices provide health seekers
What do mobile devices “digital divide”provide health seekers?

  • Immediacy and access

  • Affinity

  • Multiple methods of input/output

  • Context


Immediacy and access
Immediacy and access “digital divide”

  • 85% of respondents had cell phones

    • 53% of these, or 45% of US adults, had smartphones

    • Cell phone owners

      • 31% look for health or medical information

      • 11% have health apps

      • 9% receive text updates or alerts from doctor or pharmacist

    • Pew 9/12 via Susannah Fox

  • Mobile devices may be used immediately after leaving doctor’s office, especially with a new diagnosis or prescription

    • Impact on health literacy especially recall and retention

    • Impact on patient-physician communication

      • Could patients listen or ask questions differently due to reliance on search?


What do mobile devices provide health seekers1
What do mobile devices “digital divide”provide health seekers?

  • Immediacy and access

  • Affinity

  • Multiple methods of input/output

  • Context

More lovable when they’re cute and little


Affinity
Affinity “digital divide”

  • People relate to computers differently than people

    • What about smartphones? Tablets?

  • Mobile users have an ongoing intimate and personalized relationship with their “digital appendage” or “cognitive prosthetic device”

  • Do people seek information differently?

    • Searches on mobile devices tend to be about private/sensitive conditions: sexually transmitted diseases, mental health

  • How is use changing?

    • Greater online community use


Top 10 health searches 2011
Top 10 health searches 2011 “digital divide”

Web

  • 1. Cancer

  • 2. Diabetes

  • 3. Symptom

  • 4. Pain

  • 5. Weight

  • 6. Infection

  • 7. Virus

  • 8. Diet

  • 9. Thyroid

  • 10. Sleep

  • Healthline Networks

Mobile

  • 1. Chlamydia

  • 2. Bipolar disorder

  • 3. Depression

  • 4. Smoking/quit smoking

  • 5. Herpes

  • 6. Gout

  • 7. Scabies

  • 8. Multiple Sclerosis

  • 9. Pregnancy

  • 10. Vitamin A


Online research is up in every category with the greatest growth in community support
Online research is up in every category with the greatest growth in community support

Largest shift: more people were seeking online communities!

Source: comScore Custom Research – Jan/Feb 2010 Total n=1191 and Jan 2012 Total n=1033

  • What types of health-related information have you looked for online in the last 6 months?


What do mobile devices provide health seekers2
What do mobile devices growth in community supportprovide health seekers?

  • Immediacy and access

  • Affinity

  • Multiple methods of input/output

  • Context


Methods of input output
Methods of input/output growth in community support

  • Input: less typing, fewer spelling mistakes

    • Text: Autocomplete, word suggestions, etc.

    • Voice: “Siri, what is…”

    • QR codes

  • Search: many types of mobile search: app and browser

    • In mobile browser

    • On mobile website

    • In app store

    • In an app

  • Output: limitations are screensize and location/privacy

    • Text

    • Images

    • Video


52% growth in community support

Thousands

59%

  • SOURCE: COMSCORE MOBIL LENS, 3 MOS ENDING MARCH 2012


Number of search results viewed on smartphone versus computer
Number of search results viewed on smartphone growth in community supportversus computer


What do mobile devices provide health seekers3
What do mobile devices growth in community supportprovide health seekers?

  • Immediacy and access

  • Affinity

  • Multiple methods of input/output

  • Context


Context
Context growth in community support

  • People are exposed to a wealth of contextual information: what they see, hear, feel, remember

    • How do people act on it using their mobile device?

  • Multiple devices monitor and record contextual information, including sensors and GPS

    • How do weather, location, time of day, blood pressure, etc. impact personalization and tailoring?

  • Big data and predictive analytics


Sometimes asking questions leads to more questions fighting the hydra
Sometimes asking questions leads to growth in community supportmore questions: fighting the Hydra


Some of my questions
Some of my questions… growth in community support

  • Do people conduct health searches differently

    • On smartphones or tablets?

    • In mobile browsers or mobile websites or app stores or apps?

    • Using text or voice?

    • Based on location?

  • Are people more or less easily able to locate “helpful” information?

  • Are there different indicators of quality or reliability?

  • How can mobile health search better help people to seek information and achieve their health goals?


Near future
Near future growth in community support

  • Design for mobile first instead of retrofitting health websites into mobile format

  • Make smarter smartphones and better integrate sensor data

  • Learn from strategies used by well-funded retail

    • Use of big data and predictive analytics to provide accurate and timely health information


Future
Future growth in community support

  • From digital appendages to… Google glasses

  • The ultimate in seamless mobile health search?

  • Stay in touch


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