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New HINTS data now available! How do you use these data sets?

Content on this page is provided for reference purposes only. It is no longer maintained and may now be outdated.
Here are a few key insights about Americans from the 2014 data:
34% have mobile apps related to health.
60% with health apps used them to reach a goal, like quitting smoking or losing weight.
16% tried to get health insurance under the new federal healthcare law.
33% were offered online access to their personal health information by a healthcare provider.
27% accessed their personal health information online at least once in the past year.
23% of those diagnosed with cancer talked with health care providers about the impact of cancer or treatment on their ability to work.
Since 2003, HINTS has tracked changes in the rapidly evolving health communication and information technology landscape. HINTS regularly collects nationally representative data about the American public’s knowledge of, attitudes toward, and use of cancer, and health related information. 
We are interested in working more closely with the R2R community and encouraging you to make greater use of the HINTS data sets.  Do you currently use HINTS?
  • Researchers are using the data to understand how adults 18 years and older use different communication channels, including the Internet, to obtain vital health information for themselves and their loved ones.
  • Program planners are using the data to overcome barriers to health information usage across populations, and obtaining the data they need to create more effective communication strategies.
  • Finally, social scientists are using the data to refine their theories of health communication in the information age and to offer new and better recommendations for reducing the burden of cancer throughout the population. 

Let us know your ideas about how HINTS can be helpful in your work!


I always find one of the most

I always find one of the most compelling aspects of HINTS is how the data is so well-presented visually.  Visuals, such as pictures, drawings, charts, graphs, and diagrams, can be effective tools for communicating health information. Visuals can make the presentation of complex information easier to comprehend, more attractive, and can also reinforce written or spoken health messages.

Visual communication can benefit all audiences but can be especially helpful to individuals with lower literacy and numeracy skills. Remember, though, that visuals can’t speak for themselves. People can interpret visuals, just as they do words, in different ways. Choose visuals that support the main message and have clear headings, labels, and captions.

Below are several resources for public domain health pictures, as well as resources that will help you make decisions about choosing images that effectively communicate your message and graphic displays your audience will understand.