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Internet access, utilisation and perception by parents
  1. K L Whyte1,
  2. I Hunter2
  1. 1
    Royal Hospital for Sick Children, Glasgow, UK
  2. 2
    Wishaw General Hospital, Wishaw, UK
  1. Dr K L Whyte, Specialist Registrar in General Paediatrics, Royal Hospital for Sick Children, Dalnair Street, Yorkhill, Glasgow, UK, G3 8SJ; karenwhyte{at}doctors.org.uk

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The rapid expansion of the World Wide Web has significant implications for health professionals and patients. Detailed information about health-related issues, including about diseases that are exceptionally rare, can be easily accessed using well-known search engines. However, unreliable, misleading and inaccurate sites exist along side those that are reputable.

In 2007, nearly 15 million households (61%) in the UK had Internet access: an increase of just over 1 million since 2006.1 Previous studies have suggested that parents are not aware of the dangers of encountering misleading sources.2 Although there have been attempts to offer guidance on the quality of …

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