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Madrid, July 2009. Fewer than 10% of the Spanish regional authorities with a website for health advice offer information on major illnesses and only a very small number offer advice on preventative measures with regard to public health.

This is one of the main findings of the “Analysis of city council’s and regional authorities’ health advice websites in Spain” carried out by IE Business School. The survey, which analyzes the healthcare websites of 136 Spanish cities with more than 50,000 inhabitants and 17 autonomous regional communities, reveals that Madrid is the city and autonomous region with the best health advice website, which includes a section on preventative measures.

The IE Business School report states that only 5% of regional authorities provide vaccination calendars, and that most calendars differ in terms of vaccination dates. Only 9 Communities have information on flu and 80% of all health websites accessible through Google España are run by private companies rather than public organisms. “The risk of a swine flu pandemic occurring after this summer means that there is an even greater need to keep citizens informed about symptoms, prevention and treatment” says José Esteves, who headed the study. The results of the report were based on criteria related to specific information on the websites, including a vaccination calendar, information on typical illnesses, symptoms and treatments, list of specialized centers in the area, how often information is updated, and the official certification of contents.

According to the results of the survey the top health advice websites run by Spanish city councils are those of Madrid, Mollet del Vallés, Pozuelo, Bilbao, Rubí y Vilanova and La Geltrú, and the top health websites run by autonomous regions are those of Madrid, Castilla-La Mancha, Andalucia, Asturias, Baleares and the Valencian Community.

José Esteves feels that there is plenty of room for improvement in terms of dissemination of information, participation and standardization. “It would be a good idea for the government, city councils and companies in the health sector to define actionable standards not only for vaccinations and other preventative measures, but also for the best e-health practices of each city. We need to define a national e-health strategy, because if we don’t, citizens will be the first to feel the effects.”

 The main findings of the report are:

  •  Some 43% of Spanish cities with more than 50,000 inhabitants have their own health website.
  • The information and services offered is different on each website, as are quality standards.
  • Few cities offer information on preventative measures in the field of public health and safety.
  • Of the 136 cities included in the survey, 63 (46%) run a health website. In many cases the sites offer simple descriptions of available public health services like health centers, pharmacies, and public health plans.
  • Only 10 cities (16%) offer information on vaccinations on the health websites. Of these, 8 (13%) publish a vaccination calendar, and practically all the calendars are different. These differences create confusion and differing levels of access to vaccinations. The cities only publish vaccination calendars for children with no reference to adult vaccination programs.
  • Galicia is the only regional authority that does not offer a health website.
  • In Spain there is no official system in place to control the quality of content of health advice on public health websites, unlike countries like the US, where the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) reviews the content of public health websites, providing citizens with greater security in terms of accuracy.
  • Almost all the cities and regional authorities included in the survey have information in text format and do not use multimedia format, which discriminates against people with disabilities.

Comments

martial arts training July 5, 2013 - 3:45 pm

Yesterday, while I was at work, my cousin stole my iphone and tested to see if it can survive a
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My apple ipad is now destroyed and she has 83 views.
I know this is completely off topic but I had to share it with
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