An evaluation of the use of a Website and Telephonic Information Service as public education about forgetfulness

M.E.M. Mol, E.M. Hoogenhout, A. Aben, R.H.M. de Groot, F.R.J. Verhey, J. Jolles

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Abstract

There is increasing interest in telehealth as a potential new approach for healthcare delivery. To investigate whether telehealth is suitable to inform the older population about forgetfulness, we designed and compared two types of telehealth: Memory Website and the Memory Phone. The aim of this study was to analyze characteristics of the individuals who are interested in the Memory Phone and the Memory Website, to investigate the nature of the information in which the users were interested, and to evaluate the usefulness of the services. Participants were asked to answer several questions before and after visiting the main information menu of the telehealth facilities. Characteristics are given for all participants who used the facilities. In the evaluation period of 3 months, more individuals used the Memory Website (n = 2,631) than the Memory Phone (n = 228). The two services were used by different populations. Phone users were significantly older, more often female, and perceived themselves more often as forgetful. In the specific group of nonprofessional older individuals, general information about memory was more requested by Phone users compared with Website users (67% vs. 41%). Website users more often requested strategies and tips than Phone users (66% vs. 34%). The Phone and the Website were both considered useful. Overall, the Memory Website and the Memory Phone are two different types of evidence-based telehealth interventions, which are relevant for different populations, and are useful in informing the older population about forgetfulness and aging.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)433-443
JournalTelemedicine and E-health
Volume13
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2007

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