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The quality of internet information on depression for lay people

  • Phil Ferreira-Lay (a1) and Steve Miller (a2)
Abstract
Aims and Method

To examine the quality of information concerning depression available on the internet, identify factors associated with ‘good’ quality, and develop a simple-to-use instrument for assessing websites on depression. The Depression-Website Content Checklist was developed and compared with a previously validated, yet too complex, scale. Websites were assessed using both instruments.

Results

Good quality information is more likely to be found on websites provided by governmental, professional and charitable organisations. The differences we observed in the median scores for these websites using the Depression-Website Content Checklist are significant at the 0.05 level (C tot; Mann–Whitney, U=24.00; P=0.013). The Depression-Website Content Checklist is a valid and reliable user-friendly tool.

Clinical Implications

Patients can be directed towards better quality information by diverting them to public and non-sponsored websites. Clinicians can use the Depression-Website Content Checklist to determine website quality.

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Copyright
This is an Open Access article, distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY) license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
References
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BJPsych Bulletin
  • ISSN: 0955-6036
  • EISSN: 1472-1473
  • URL: /core/journals/bjpsych-bulletin
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The quality of internet information on depression for lay people

  • Phil Ferreira-Lay (a1) and Steve Miller (a2)
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