"Partnering with seniors for better health": Computer use and internet health information retrieval among older adults in a low socioeconomic community

Adeline Chu, Jeffrey Huber, Beth Mastel-Smith, Sandra Cesario

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

82 Scopus citations

Abstract

Purpose: This health communication project measured the psychosocial influences of computer anxiety, computer confidence, and computer self-efficacy in older adults at six meal congregate sites. The adults completed a five-week education intervention, based on Bandura's self-efficacy model, designed to assist older adults in retrieving and evaluating health information resources on the Internet. Methods: One hundred thirty-seven participants, ages sixty-five and older, were randomized in a controlled, two-group, pre-post, repeated measures design. Participants in the intervention group received a two-hour training session, once a week for five weeks. The Computer Confidence Subscale and Computer Anxiety Subscale of the Computer Attitude Scale and the Computer Self-Efficacy Measure were administered to both groups at three time intervals: at baseline, completion of the five-week intervention, and six weeks after completion of the intervention. Data were analyzed using repeated measures analysis of variance. Results: Findings showed a reduction in computer anxiety and increases in computer confidence and computer self-efficacy in retrieving and evaluating online health information (P<0.001). Discussion: The study suggests an array of possibilities to engage older adults in the use of Internet health information resources to better contribute to their health, independence, safety, and wellness.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)12-20
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of the Medical Library Association
Volume97
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2009

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Informatics
  • Library and Information Sciences

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