Two letters: it’s the difference between reliable and dubious Information on the Internet. We take the address of “www.impfen-info.de”: opens the website of the Federal centre for health education with certified and reputable information. You are, however, “www.impf-info.de” only two letters less, you end up on the side of a Munich doctor, and finds statements – carefully phrased – controversial.
Both sides are on the hit lists of the search engine Google close to each other. Depending on what keywords you type in carefully (and anyone who enters them), lists Google on the side of the Impfkritikers even before the side of the Federal center.
Two-thirds of Germans obtain information about health from the Internet, recently found in a study by the Bertelsmann Foundation. In medical questions Google & Co as a source of information, according to a recent survey, from Berlin, is now even more popular than the advice of friends and relatives.
The advantages of the “Dr. Google” to lie on the Hand: He has office hours around the clock, advises patients of all cash, has to say to all the symptoms and disease pictures something knows of any waiting periods co-payments and there is no question of him is stupid.
1. As well, the quick Information from the Internet?
“The Internet is a better counselor than often assumed,” writes the Bertelsmann Foundation. “The constant availability of more or less relevant medical information on the Internet leads many patients to strong uncertainty,” says, however, Martina Wenker, Vice-President of the Federal chamber of physicians.
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And both are right. In fact, it is so that, for example, an Internet search for “headache” in the short or long articles about brain tumors revealed promotes. Who Fears already or are prone to hypochondria, is the poison.
For others, the Internet is a wise counselor. For example, in the Form of the page washabich.de where you do not get help, if you understand medical jargon. It has, for example, a Doctor’s written diagnosis that you don’t understand, you can end the document washabich.de one and is a volunteer medical students created a Translation, which can also understand to a layman – for free!
At # 1 on the sides, where the Germans informed about health topics, the Online encyclopedia Wikipedia. Also many of the laity, work in addition to recognized professionals known. Which article was written by whom? What is wrong, what’s wrong? Skepticism is appropriate.
2. How do I distinguish between true and false?
Anyone following a few rules, you can use the Internet nevertheless, even in questions of health as a valuable tipster. Rule no 1: Any medical Research on the Internet, requires a second Research – namely, about the source of the Information. Who is behind the site? Who operates, who funds it? It is advertising? A secure knowledge, or individual opinion?
Another home remedy against false information in the network, the second opinion is. What other websites say on the subject? Conformity or dissent? We have to do it with an original point of view or a conspiracy theory? Is pursuing a commercial purpose? Because in addition to ideology, there are mainly business interests, which lead to wrong information. For example, when drama will be out of proportion to the sale of drugs or therapies to stimulate. Not infrequently, a look into the imprint exposes why a page is as it is. Although commercial offers must be in any case bad. The page www.igel-monitor.de for example, is operated by the health insurance and informed reliably about paid medical benefits.
On reliable but information portals, which are independent or out of state units are to be operated, for example, of the Federal centre for health education. The signed up for numerous Internet services with education on topics from organ donation to Online Searches responsible. The Federal Ministry of health and the relevant state ministries refer to their websites to offers of information that are reliable.
There are also specialized to find specific portals for those Affected by chronic illnesses, for example cancer, especially recommended to their continuously updated “blue guide”, which you can download as pdf files. Patients with heart disease find reliable information on the pages of the heart Foundation, for diabetics there is a private information service.
General, but also excellent points of contact for legitimate offers of information on the Internet, the page is www.patienten-information.de (by the chamber of Physicians). The Institute for quality and efficiency in health care (IQWIG) runs the also recommend to offer www.gesundheitsinformation.de with information on topics from losing weight to cystitis. By the way: Only 30 percent of those, you know, keep this page for to be trustworthy. This shows that you can overdo it with the skepticism in the network!
In the future, the search for secure medical information will be much easier: The Federal Ministry of health has decided to network all reputable Online health services in the future, a “national health portal” to each other. It is planned, among other things, a search engine that will only spit out a reliable hit. To realization, it will still take a while. As long as own Research and a good Dose of common sense is necessary.
3. How well Apps are health?
Research and a good Dose of common sense is needed also in the evaluation of the more than 100,000 health Apps currently available in the Stores for Apple and Android phones. Every third German has now installed such an App on the Smartphone. But is the bring in?
Scientific evidence to be. However, there are numerous indications that such Apps can help in everyday life actually. The Federal Minister of health plans, health Apps in the future, the insurance will pay!
Their Strengths Apps have less in diagnosis and therapy, but as a helper in the prevention and promotion of health in everyday life. You are sounding the Alarm, if the interval to the next meal break fast starts (e.g., “body-almost”). Let me know when the next Yoga or Fitness Exercise (for example, “Runtastic”) has occurred, and explain how it is carried out. They help to keep their diet, movement, sleep, menstrual, blood sugar, exposure to UV light. Remind them of vaccinations and visits to the dentist, to the back training and bowel cancer screening.
The Overview, to help you, the goals you set, the virtual victory trophies and reward points to be awarded: All of this can actually help to get more Fitness and a healthier lifestyle. In many cases, have a smoke, for example, has proven to be Entwöhn Apps. The count, by the way always up to date, how much money you have saved by not Smoking already.
4. Data collecting made easy
Some of the health functions connected to the two major mobile phone systems, iOS and Android, is closely aligned to the operating systems. In the case of iOS, the corresponding area is called “Health”, Android has the App “Google Fit”, Samsung offers “Samsung Health”App. You collect in the first line data: body weight, exercise, ingested and expended calories. This data can collect the mobile phones only for the part automatically. You have to extend the Hand of night, or the Smartphone with a compatible device to connect to, for example, a Thermometer or a Bluetooth scale that transmits all the measured or calculated values of weight, body fat, BMI immediately to the Smartphone.
More and more such devices offer ways of self-monitoring. Fitness bracelets and Smartwatches to capture in addition to the number of steps you take in, as a rule, also the pulse. In addition, there are devices on the market that were previously reserved to Physicians: high-tech mattresses for sleep monitoring, blood sugar and blood pressure measuring devices with a Bluetooth connection. First Smartwatches, meanwhile, can make even ECG. In Europe, there is not this function yet.
With all these data, the hope of the manufacturer, diseases, early detect and better treat. Because for Doctors, hospitals, and therapists can be best over a longer period of time, the collected body of data is quite helpful, and hope the manufacturers. Who completes the data collection and then additional medical information, for example, the x-rays pass or other medical documents, it can make the Smartphone to a meaningful digital patient file.
In Germany, there are several Apps that implement this already. The main one is called the “Vivy” and is supported by 21 of statutory and four private funds that they provide exclusively to their 17.7 million Insured. “Vivy” stores vaccination records, doctor’s letters, laboratory values and x-ray images and provides them on request to the treating doctor directly to you in electronic Form.
5. Without trust, nothing works
All modern safety standards are adhered to, that is the “Vivy”-makers, as the providers of all the other Online health services to emphasize at every opportunity: By the “end – to-end encryption”, “secure, anonymous exchange of data,” and “the highest requirements of high data protection regulation” means the patient data is in good hands, it is the “Vivy”website. But shortly after the Start of the App revealed security researchers, flaws in the “Vivy”System.
If this were really so serious as shown (the manufacturer denies it), and whether they have been turned off: the simple user can not judge. He must decide whether he is the provider, he will give him the data – what is when you visit a doctor or therapist in the Offline world, but also different.