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PsychologyOur news, events & seminars

The development and quantitative analysis of the Internet Doctor Seminar

Speaker: Judy Joseph
16:30 - 17:30
14 February 2011
School of Psychology, Room 3031, Shackleton Building (Building 44), University of Southampton, Highfield, Southampton, SO17 1BJ

For more information regarding this seminar, please telephone Nicky Baverstock, Postgraduate Administrator on 02380 59 2327 or email .

Event details

To be held in conjunction with 'Management of Irritable Bowel Syndrome in Primary Care: a Feasibility Randomised Controlled Trial'

There has been relatively little research on the role that web-based support for self-care might play in the management of minor, acute symptoms, in contrast to the wealth of recent research into Internet interventions to support self-management of long-term conditions.  If Internet-delivered care for minor symptoms is to become widely accepted and well-integrated part of efficient routine healthcare then we need to understand better how and why it might be welcomed and used effectively.

This pilot study investigated the usage of the ‘Internet Doctor’ website providing tailored advice on self-management of minor respiratory symptoms. Participants were automatically randomised to one of two versions of the website: (i) the full, ‘more interactive’ version, or, (ii) a ‘less interactive’ version which omitted references to the Internet Doctor and links to obtain further information.

Participants who viewed the less interactive version were more likely to complete the full consultation cycle for their selected symptom and were also more likely to consult for more symptoms than those in the more interactive version. Few participants clicked on the optional links in the more interactive version. It is concluded that although the more interactive version of the website provided more information, participants did not make full use of the interactive features which displayed this information, so may not have benefited from the website as much as those viewing the less interactive version.


The following questions will also be discussed:


  • What characteristics will maximise the appeal and utility of Internet-delivered health interventions?


Research excellence
CAHP Research group

Speaker information

Judy Joseph,Research Fellow, School of Psychology, University of Southampton

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