Is This for Real?: Discerning Health Information Across the Web

Is This for Real? Discerning Health Information Across the Web

Googling something is easy. Researching a topic and finding well-sourced, credible information is another story, especially in the healthcare sector. As we’ve learned through the pandemic, there’s a ton of health information on the internet and other forms of media, including television, social media, advertisements, and video that competes for our attention. Unfortunately, it’s up to us to determine what is “true vs. false,” to be able to apply it to our lives and potentially share with others, including family members, friends, support group members, and our healthcare staff.

How do we discern health information that’s fact vs fiction when we’re looking at different sources?

Where is the information coming from? Try looking for:

Additional websites that are reviewed by physicians and other healthcare professionals:

Social media is a good place to make friends and join support groups that consist of other people with the same disease

  • Sharing health information about different experiences, including symptoms and side effects can be a great way to learn about different aspects of the disease you may have not considered or heard about
    • However, remember that people’s experiences are purely anecdotal and every patient is different. This can be true of blogs and other healthcare websites
  • If you find information that may be relevant to you and/or that you may be concerned about, share it with your healthcare team