Chronic medical conditions affect about 50% of the adult population in the United States (CDC, 2015), and demand for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) is on the rise, especially among people with chronic pain and illness. Many CAM users choose not to discuss it with their doctors, and increasingly, Americans look to the Internet for health information. These trends underscore the importance of accessible, authoritative consumer health information (eHealth). The philosophies and practices of CAM, nontraditional in Western biomedicine, add another dimension to health communication challenges. Using the user experience design (UX) concept of personas, this study explored CAM rhetoric and information design found on major health insurance websites in Minnesota. It examined the need for improving health communications to enhance patient understanding and decision-making about CAM modalities and ultimately help improve patient involvement in their own health and well-being.
Includes 2 files: the paper is the capstone thesis and a poster that accompanies the capstone thesis.
Rhetoric and Information Design for Complementary and Alternative Medicine on the Internet: The CAM “Communication Gap” in Consumer Health Information (eHealth).
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