How do cancer patients navigate the public information environment? Understanding patterns and motivations for movement among information sources

Rebekah H. Nagler, Anca Romantan, Bridget J. Kelly, Robin S. Stevens, Stacy W. Gray, Shawnika J. Hull, A. Susana Ramirez, Robert C. Hornik

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations

Abstract

Little is known about how patients move among information sources to fulfill unmet needs. We interviewed 43 breast, prostate, and colorectal cancer patients. Using a grounded theory approach, we identified patterns and motivations for movement among information sources. Overall, patients reported using one source (e.g., newspaper) followed by the use of another source (e.g., Internet), and five key motivations for such cross-source movement emerged. Patients' social networks often played a central role in this movement. Understanding how patients navigate an increasingly complex information environment may help clinicians and educators to guide patients to appropriate, high-quality sources.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)360-370
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Cancer Education
Volume25
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2010

Keywords

  • Complementarity theory
  • Cross-source engagement
  • Grounded theory
  • Information seeking

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