The purpose of this paper is to assess the value of websites accessible to patients looking for Web-based information regarding hypertension management.
A cross-sectional research was carried out by finding out Malay and English language websites about hypertension. For this purpose, the keywords “hypertension and treatment” were entered on the Yahoo, Google, Ask.com, Bing and DuckDuckGo search engines, and the first five pages of the results obtained were inspected. The DISCERN tool was deployed for evaluating the quality of information. The actionability and understandability were assessed through the Patient Education Materials Assessment Tool (PEMAT). Eight assessors were asked to assess and grade the involved websites.
Of the 216 websites, eight (4.0%) conformed to the inclusion norms. All websites were classified into private, 4 (50%); government, 2 (25%) and personal, 2 (25%). The general rating of the eight websites was good (mean 51.6 ± 8.2 on a 75-point scale); however, half of the websites were rated as fair (mean 45.3 ± 3.1 on a 75-point scale). All websites conformed to the standard score of ≥70% for understandability (mean 76.1 ± 11.4), but none for actionability (mean 52.8 ± 13.9). Analysis of variance indicated there was no statistical difference with regards to quality (p = 0.525), understandability (p = 0.484) and actionability (p = 0.188) among the three website sets.
Considering the surplus of websites dedicated to information on hypertension, an independent assessment of the quality of these websites will be advantageous. Patients should be rendered high understandability, quality and actionability to evade deceptive online information.
This study was supported by a grant from the Ministry of Higher Education, Malaysia (reference number FRGS/1/2019/SS06/UiTM/03/6 and 600-IRMI/FRGS 5/3 [448/2019]). The authors would like to express their gratitude towards the Ministry for this financial support. The data reported in this paper is those of the authors and independent from the funding source.
Ab Hamid, M.R., Mohd Isamudin, M., Buhari, S.S. and Khairul Ikram, E.H. (2021), "Quality, understandability and actionability of online patient education material about hypertension", Nutrition & Food Science, Vol. 51 No. 4, pp. 621-632. https://doi.org/10.1108/NFS-04-2020-0155
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