May 17, 2005

Health Information Online

Part 1. Health Seekers

Eight in ten internet users have looked online for health information.

Eight out of ten (79%) American internet users have searched for information on at least one major health topic online, statistically the same portion (80%) as in 2002. That translates to about 95 million American adults (18+ years) who use the internet to find health information (a small increase from 2002 because the internet population has grown a bit). As in 2002, certain groups of internet users are the most likely to have sought health information online: women, internet users younger than 65, college graduates, those with more online experience, and those with broadband access.

Health seekers

The general make-up of the internet population has also not changed dramatically in the last two years. In December 2002, 57% of American adults said they had internet access. At the time of this survey, November 2004, 59% of American adults said they had internet access. There are no statistically significant differences between 2002 and 2004 when it comes to the population of online health seekers by gender, race, ethnicity, age, or education.

Contours of the Health Seeker Population