Internet Usage in Older Australian Adults
The cost of healthcare in Australia’s ageing population is ever increasing. In an attempt to reduce these rising costs, the internet has been suggested as a possible means of disseminating health-related information and promoting preventive health behaviours. Objective Our objective was to determine the proportion of Australians aged 50-74 years who have internet access, and the characteristics of internet usage, current online health information seeking behaviour, and the willingness to receive unsolicited health information via the Internet.
A random sample of N=25,511 urban older Australians aged 50 to 74 years received a questionnaire via mail and were asked to complete questions concerning variables related to internet usage. N=8,762 returned a competed questionnaire. Results Eighty-two per cent of respondents reported having internet access, mainly at home (94%), and the majority actively use this technology (93%). Younger people and those of higher socio-economic status and higher education were more likely to have access (p