Assessing the eHealth literacy skills of family caregivers of medically ill elderly

Ali Soleimaninejad, Saeideh Valizadeh-Haghi, Shahabedin Rahmatizadeh


Objectives: The purpose of current research is to assess the eHealth literacy level in the family caregivers of the elderly with hypertension and type-II diabetes.

 Methods: A total of 160 caregivers completed the eHEALS questionnaire. The effect of participants' gender, education, and age on eHealth literacy was evaluated. For evaluation of the correlation between the accession of health information importance and the internet usefulness for decision-making, Spearman’s correlation coefficient was applied.

Results: The participants eHealth literacy mean score was 26.163(SD=8.83). The age of participants had a meaningful impact on the level of eHealth literacy (t=6.074; P<0.001). Furthermore, among variant education levels in terms of eHealth literacy score significant differences existed (F=5.222; P=0.001).

Discussion: Family caregivers have a poor level of eHealth literacy. eHealth information is more important for family caregivers with a higher eHealth literacy, which may be due to their higher skills in obtaining health and medical information from the internet. Caregivers' age should be considered once recommending them for the internet using to obtain health information, as the age was an affecting factor.

 Conclusion: Health centers and authorities in charge of the elderly health are recommended to train caregivers with proper skills to use online health information, such that the elderly enjoy the benefits, including improved care conditions and savings in terms of treatment costs and time.

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Online Journal of Public Health Informatics * ISSN 1947-2579 *