The health information seeking and usage behavior intention of Chinese consumers through mobile phones

Zhaohua Deng (School of Medicine and Health Management, Huazhong University of Science & Technology, Wuhan, China)
Shan Liu (Economics and Management School, Wuhan University, Wuhan, China)
Oliver Hinz (Technische Universität Darmstadt, Darmstadt, Germany)

Information Technology & People

ISSN: 0959-3845

Publication date: 1 June 2015



Although the health information seeking behavior of consumers through the internet has received great attention, limited attempt has been made to integrate both the health information seeking behavior and the usage behavior in a mobile online context. The purpose of this paper is to explore the factors that influence consumer mobile health information seeking (MHIS) and usage behavior based on information quality, perceived value, personal health value, and trust.


A survey was conducted to collect data. A two-step approach of structure equation modeling based was used to test the measurement model and hypothesis model.


Information quality, perceived value, and trust were found to have positive effects on both the intention to seek and to use health information, and that the intention to seek affects the intention to use. Among the three components of perceived value, the utilitarian and epistemic values were found to have significant effects on intention to seek. In addition, the current health status of health consumers moderates the relationships between MHIS and usage intention and their determinants.


Studies have primarily focussed on online health information seeking behavior, whereas a few of these studies have examined the seeking behavior intention and the usage behavior intention in a general model. The results indicate that health information usage behavior intention is closely related to the seeking behavior intention in the mobile context, which enriches the research on the relationship between information seeking and its outcomes. Furthermore, this study highlights the impact of information quality, perceived value, and trust on the intention to seek, and the impacts of information quality and trust on the intention to use, which have been overlooked in previous studies on MHIS.



This work was partially supported by grants from the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Nos 71201063 and 71101060), and a grant from the Humanities and Social Science Foundation provided by the Ministry of Education (No. 12YJC630031). The authors are grateful to the participants who responded to the survey and graciously gave their time and thoughtful suggestions. Correspondence should be addressed to Shan Liu.


Deng, Z., Liu, S. and Hinz, O. (2015), "The health information seeking and usage behavior intention of Chinese consumers through mobile phones", Information Technology & People, Vol. 28 No. 2, pp. 405-423.

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