According to a recent report by the Pew Internet in American Life project, the internet has become the third most common source of health information for Americans, ranking behind "asking a health professional" and "getting advice from family or friends." The proportion of Americans who use the internet grows every year, and more low income and disadvantaged populations are online than ever before. However, the vast majority of health information sites on the internet are written at a level which requires a high degree of literacy to comprehend. The proposed project will use a user-centered design process to adapt content from the extensive NetWellness.org web site to meet the needs of a disadvantaged, low literacy population. The project will initially target content related to diabetes and hypertension, two health problems with pronounced health disparities. The design process will be informed by established principles of design for reduced literacy populations and focus group input from members of inner city communities. The re-designed content will be tested with a panel survey of a group of potential site users, to establish whether the site meets their needs and is used to make changes in behavior, spur discussion with health care providers, and share with others.

Public Health Relevance

The proposed project is of very high relevance to public health. Providing information in a style and format that reflects community needs and wishes has the potential of reducing the knowledge gap and contributing to healthy decision making. While we understand very well that information by itself cannot solve fundamental health disparities, access to information is a basic building block of improved health for communities.

Agency
National Institute of Health (NIH)
Institute
National Library of Medicine (NLM)
Type
Resources Project Grant (NLM) (G08)
Project #
5G08LM011075-03
Application #
8514724
Study Section
Special Emphasis Panel (ZLM1-AP-G (J2))
Program Officer
Vanbiervliet, Alan
Project Start
2011-09-01
Project End
2014-08-31
Budget Start
2013-09-01
Budget End
2014-08-31
Support Year
3
Fiscal Year
2013
Total Cost
$87,346
Indirect Cost
Name
Ohio State University
Department
Public Health & Prev Medicine
Type
Schools of Public Health
DUNS #
832127323
City
Columbus
State
OH
Country
United States
Zip Code
43210