Seniors Increasingly Go Online for Health Information

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A small survey of 200 senior citizens in the United States finds many respondents using the Internet to get health information and wanting more.

Accenture conducted the survey in July 2013, which is a subset of a larger survey of more than 9,000 adults of various ages across nine nations on the electronic capabilities of medical providers. Results of the U.S. senior population shows 56 percent of surveyed Medicare consumers visited their health plan Web site at least once during the previous two months, with 67 percent saying online access to their medical information is somewhat or very important to them.

Overall, surveyed seniors are heavy into the Internet, with more than three-quarters accessing it daily. Ninety-one percent use email frequently, 73 percent conduct searches and about one-third visit social media sites.

But seniors want more access to health information, the survey results show. Eighty-three percent of respondents want full access to their electronic health records and 28 percent of them have that today. More than two-thirds want to electronically request prescription refills and 46 percent can do it.

Other health-related online activities that surveyed seniors pegged as important include having a virtual visit with a physician without a co-pay and electronic scheduling of appointments online or via a mobile app.

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