Patients get Better Care when Better Informed

A recent study, undertaken by the University of London, looked to see if there was a difference in outcome for those patients who did their research on-line.  Patients said that they felt that on-line research helped them to receive better care because it showed the doctors that they were taking an active interest in their health. The work put in by patients also provided them with a further level of understanding about their condition and the various treatment options. This allowed patients to get into more detailed discussions with the doctor. However, it was found that patients still trusted their GP’s advice over the information they found on much of the internet.

The findings published in the British Journal of General Practice showed that some patients felt that GPs took them more seriously when they had gathered information on their symptoms online. On the other hand, some patients were concerned about doing their own research and seemed worried their doctor would be offended.  The study suggests that patients can benefit from on-line research as this is valuable preparation to allow more to be gained from the appointment.

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