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Abstract

HEALTH INFORMATION NEEDS AND HEALTH INFORMATION SEEKING BEHAVIOUR OF THE RESIDENTS OF JOS AND ENVIRONS

*Nanloh. S. Jimam and Jude A. Teyiremi

ABSTRACT

Aim: To investigate the health information needs and health information seeking behaviour of the people of Jos and environs. Methods: The study was a cross sectional study design; with a study population consisting of individuals of both sexes living within the metropolis of Jos, cutting across people between the age of 10 years and above. The purpose of the study was explained to the target population and their consent individually obtained before a semistructured interviewer questionnaire was administered to all the eligible participants in the survey. Results: The result shows that majority (90.5%) of the respondents said that health workers are the common source of health information, followed by television (70%), and radio (48.5%) in their areas; with 88.5% of them admitting that health workers are the appropriate source for seeking health information. When asked of their reasons for seeking health information; 87.6% of the respondents said it was for treatment of diseases. This is not unconnected with the levels of education of the respondents in which about 57.6% of them had secondary education. Similarly, 81.7% of the respondents perceived environment as a factor influencing their health information needs and information seeking behaviours. Conclusion: The study shows that the respondents had good knowledge of the sources/formats of health information and reasons for seeking health information, with majority of them agreeing that environmental factors influences their health information needs and health information seeking behaviours. There is therefore need for proper information dissemination to the respondents in order to preserve their own health and the healthy environment of their surroundings which will help in solving some of the health needs as well as promoting good health among the citizens.

Keywords: Health, Information needs, Information seeking, Behaviours, Education.


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