Women's health education and the internet: consumerism or mutuality?
Suggs, L. Suzanne
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The purpose of this study was to extend the application of the patient-provider framework, specifically the mutuality and consumerism models, to women's on-line health resources. A convenience sample of 139 women's health Internet sites gathered from the New York Times index of Women's Health Resources on-line was utilized to evaluate the presence of the mutuality and consumerism models. Those sites containing e-mail contact information were included in the survey of Web site authors, which collected data about health education components, author characteristics, and operating guidelines. This study extended the patient-provider framework to a new environment, the Internet, and found support that early health-oriented Web sites were characterized by the mutuality model. The findings indicated that consumerism was not a characteristic of women's health Web sites.