Health-information seeking on the Internet and current smoking status: Evidence from the national health interview survey


Two research questions were addressed. First, what are the differences between internet searchers and non-searchers for health-related information among current and former smokers? Second, does searching the internet for health-related information predict current smoking status in a multivariate model that controls for variations in sociodemographic and family characteristics? Data collected from 10,929 current and former smokers who participated in the 2009 National Health Interview Survey showed significant differences in sociodemographic and family characteristics between searchers and non-searchers. Importantly, searching the internet for health-related information made an independent contribution to the prediction of current smoking status in a multinomial logistic regression model. This study is significant in that it utilized a nationally representative sample to examine the correlation between internet use and smoking behavior and supports ongoing efforts of public health advocates to continue their efforts in developing and delivering online smoking cessation programs.

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Killian, T. (2012) Health-information seeking on the Internet and current smoking status: Evidence from the national health interview survey. Open Journal of Preventive Medicine, 2, 291-298. doi: 10.4236/ojpm.2012.23042.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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