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Korean Journal of Preventive Medicine 2001;34(4): 389-398.
Information Searching Behavior of Health Care Consumers by Sociodemographic Characteristics.
Yoomi Chae, Sunhee Lee, Woohyun Cho
1Department of Preventive Medicine, Medical College of Ewha Womans University, Korea.
2Department of Preventive Medicine, Medical College of Yonsei University, Korea.
OBJECTIVES: To investigate the information searching behavior of health care consumers according to sociodemographic characteristics. METHODS: A questionnaire survey was conducted of 1,507 persons who were selected through a multi-stage stratified area cluster sampling of the Republic of Korea, excluding the province of Jeju-do. Personal were conducted through a door-to-door survey between 27 July and 10 August 1999. RESULTS: 80.5% of respondents used more than one source of information and those 40~59 years of age, female, a housewife or student and those who claimed a religion demonstrated more active information searching behavior. A personal informer was used significantly more in those 20~39 years old, female, and those who claimed a religion. Clerical workers, those with post-secondary education and a monthly income greater than 2,000,000 won ($1500) were more actively used a public informer. Low socioeconomic status and older persons used an experimental informer when they chose a health care institution. CONCLUSION: Regardless of the sociodemographic characteristics, personal and experimental informers were the most useful source of information. Because appropriate information was not easy to obtain, the health care consumer was dependent upon word-of-mouth communication(personal informer) when using health care services.
Key words: Information searching behavior; Information source; Health care consumer
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