C51. Murero, M. & Rice, R. E. (2006). E-health research. In M. Murero & R.E. Rice (Eds). The Internet and health care: Theory, research and practice (pp. 3-26). Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.

The popularization of the Internet (so far, primarily in developed countries) and its opportunities and challenges have already significantly influenced society.  In the health care field, access to online resources and environments is having a major and controversial impact on its stakeholders, users, providers and institutions.  The book presents an in-depth introduction to the field of Internet and Health Care, from both international and interdisciplinary perspectives, combining expertise from social sciences, medicine, policy and systems analysis. It is the expression of a new generation of e-researchers and practitioners committed to excellence in investigating a new and still little known phenomenon. We decided to focus on the relation between the Internet and health care to investigate a very specific but extraordinary innovation, rather than disperse our efforts in the broader field of telemedicine, although other ICTs are considered here in some contexts.  The book simultaneously tries to build theoretical perspectives in light of empirical evidence and applications, and to foster integration among researchers, health care providers and health information seekers. The book also highlights some of the challenges that the Internet presents to the health care field, policy-makers, providers and users, in different contexts.

Motivations for the Book; Audience; Related Sources; Chapter Topics; Topics Across the Chapters; Conclusion.

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