C44. Katz, J. E., Rice,
R. E. & Acord, S. (2004). E-health networks and social
Expectations of centralization, experiences of decentralization. In M.
Castells (Ed.), The network society: A cross-cultural perspective
(pp. 293-318). London: Edward Elgar.
The chapter is organized around four analytical themes, all of which
stem from the fact that the Internet has given a large portion of the
public and most healthcare professionals an opportunity to gain medical
and health information and communication resources. Anticipatory of and
reactive to the opportunity that is created by the social interaction
health information technology and participant desires, (1) there has
substantial resource commitment resulting in the creation of many
centralized services (some commercial, some governmental); (2) however,
despite their utility, perceived and actual inadequacies of these
have stimulated disparate groups to organize their own compensatory,
and local networks of health information resources. In both centralized
and decentralized Internet health resources, though, there are still
issues to be resolved, such as (3) reconfiguring physician/patient
in light of new technology, and (4) creating socially sensitive
services that are also socially equitable in terms of accessibility.
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