Medical Tourism Websites with an Approach to Information Content: A Systematic Review
Background: The information content of medical tourism websites could influence the decisions patients and their families make regarding medical centers. This study aimed to investigate the information content of medical tourism websites.
Methods: This systematic review was carried out in 2017. Key terms used for searching consisted of, but not restricted to, medical tourism, information content, information needs, and medical tourism website. The terms were searched on PubMed, Science Direct, Web of Science, Embase, ProQuest and Cochrane. One hundred and ninety-two articles out of 1185 retrieved were duplicated and removed from the study. Titles and abstracts of the remaining identified studies were scanned considering the aim of the study. Finally, 31 relevant studies were included in the study.
Results: The information content of medical tourism websites can be grouped into three main categories including general information (with six subgroups), medical information (with eight subgroups) and tourism information (with one subgroup). The subgroups include information about medical centers, target country, costs and insurance, contact details, website information, photo galleries, the quality of services, trustworthiness, the quality of supportive services, risks, patient rights, physicians and their specialties, and patient instructions for receiving medical and tourism services.
Conclusion: The medical tourism websites should provide a wide range of information. Considering the important role of medical tourism websites in meeting patients’ information needs, the relevant bodies should improve the information content of medical tourism websites to help patients to make their decisions reliably.
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|Issue||Vol 49 No 6 (2020)|
|Information needs; Information content Medical tourism; Medical tourism website|
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