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Internet use and the logics of personal empowerment in health


  • Lemire, Marc
  • Sicotte, Claude
  • Paré, Guy


Objectives The development of personal involvement and responsibility has become a strategic issue in health policy. The main goal of this study is to confirm the coexistence of three logics of personal empowerment through health information found on the Internet.Methods A theoretical framework was applied to analyze personal empowerment from the user's perspective. A well-established Canadian Web site that offers information on personal health was used as a case study. A close-ended questionnaire was completed online by 2275 visitors and members of the Web site.Results The findings confirm that the development of feelings of competence and control through Internet use is structured around three different logics. This implies three types of aptitudes that are fostered when the Internet is used to seek health information: doing what is prescribed (the professional logic), making choices based on personal judgment (the consumer logic), and mutual assistance (the community logic).Conclusions A recurring issue in three logics is the balance of roles and responsibilities required between the individual and the health provider.

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  • Lemire, Marc & Sicotte, Claude & Paré, Guy, 2008. "Internet use and the logics of personal empowerment in health," Health Policy, Elsevier, vol. 88(1), pages 130-140, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:hepoli:v:88:y:2008:i:1:p:130-140

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. De Rosis, Sabina & Barsanti, Sara, 2016. "Patient satisfaction, e-health and the evolution of the patient–general practitioner relationship: Evidence from an Italian survey," Health Policy, Elsevier, vol. 120(11), pages 1279-1292.

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