Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Awareness of Cancer Genetic Testing Among Online Users: Internet Use, Health Knowledge, and Socio-Demographic Correlates

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Genetic testing, internet use, online information seeking, racial and ethnic disparities

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The increased availability of genetic information online has led to growing concerns regarding health disparities among racial and ethnic groups and the need to examine the role of race/ethnicity in genetic testing awareness. Online users from a national representative sample were analyzed to explain the racial/ethnic differences in genetic testing awareness. The analysis indicated that health-related knowledge, online information-seeking behaviors, and information trust of the Internet were correlated with the prediction for awareness of online genetic testing information in different ethnic groups. The study also highlights these differences and identifies the priority ranking of the factors that reflect racial gaps. These findings suggest that the diversities in amount of trust of online information sources, education initiatives of health services, and knowledge of the existence of clinical trials and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention need to be considered more closely for racial/ethnic subgroups.

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Journal of Consumer Health on the Internet, v. 18, no. 1, p. 15-30.