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Identifying health information needs of senior online communities users: a text mining approach

Identifying health information needs of senior online communities users: a text mining approach The purpose of this study is to identify the health information needs of senior online communities (SOCs) users, which could provide a basis for improving senior health information services.Design/methodology/approachA total of 14,933 health-related posts in the two most popular senior online communities (Yinling and Keai) in China are crawled as a corpus. Based on the results of word frequency analysis, text classification is performed based on two aspects: medical systems (Western medicine and traditional Chinese medicine) and topics. The health information needs of SOCs users are revealed from the composition, growth trends and popularity of health information. Finally, some key points of senior health information services are discussed.FindingsThe health information needs of senior users can be divided into four types: coping with aging, dietary nutrition, physical exercise and mental health. These needs are comprehensive and involve a variety of health issues. Users are mainly concerned with physical health issues. In terms of medical systems, the number of Western medicine posts is relatively larger, whereas traditional Chinese medicine appears more in posts on coping with aging and physical exercise. The health information needs of SOCs users are in a stable status. Both the medical systems and topics could have an impact on the popularity of health information, but the number of posts is inconsistent with the level of popularity.Originality/valueThis study combines multiple perspectives to identify the health information needs of seniors in China with a comprehensive overview. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Aslib Journal of Information Management Emerald Publishing

Identifying health information needs of senior online communities users: a text mining approach

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References (57)

Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
© Emerald Publishing Limited
ISSN
2050-3806
DOI
10.1108/ajim-02-2020-0057
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

The purpose of this study is to identify the health information needs of senior online communities (SOCs) users, which could provide a basis for improving senior health information services.Design/methodology/approachA total of 14,933 health-related posts in the two most popular senior online communities (Yinling and Keai) in China are crawled as a corpus. Based on the results of word frequency analysis, text classification is performed based on two aspects: medical systems (Western medicine and traditional Chinese medicine) and topics. The health information needs of SOCs users are revealed from the composition, growth trends and popularity of health information. Finally, some key points of senior health information services are discussed.FindingsThe health information needs of senior users can be divided into four types: coping with aging, dietary nutrition, physical exercise and mental health. These needs are comprehensive and involve a variety of health issues. Users are mainly concerned with physical health issues. In terms of medical systems, the number of Western medicine posts is relatively larger, whereas traditional Chinese medicine appears more in posts on coping with aging and physical exercise. The health information needs of SOCs users are in a stable status. Both the medical systems and topics could have an impact on the popularity of health information, but the number of posts is inconsistent with the level of popularity.Originality/valueThis study combines multiple perspectives to identify the health information needs of seniors in China with a comprehensive overview.

Journal

Aslib Journal of Information ManagementEmerald Publishing

Published: Jan 6, 2021

Keywords: Health information needs; Senior online community; Text mining

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