John M. Benson

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Through an analysis of recent data on adults' and children's computer use and experiences, this DataWatch shows that use of computers and the Internet is widespread and that significant percentages of the public are already using the Internet to get health information. The surveys also show that the Internet is already a useful vehicle for reaching large(More)
The Kaiser Family Foundation/Harvard School of Public Health Health News Index, a series of 39 surveys with a total of over 42,000 respondents from 1996 through 2002, measures how closely Americans follow major health stories in the news and what they understand about the issues covered in those stories. On average, four in ten adults reported following(More)
This paper examines the depth and breadth of the public backlash against managed care and the reasons for it. We conclude that the backlash is real and influenced by at least two principal factors: (1) A significant proportion of Americans report problems with managed care plans; and (2) the public perceives threatening and dramatic events in managed care(More)
The World Health Organization (WHO) ranked health systems in 191 countries based on measures developed by public health experts. This paper compares the WHO rankings for seventeen industrialized countries with the perceptions of their citizens. The results show little relationship between WHO rankings and the satisfaction of the citizens who experience(More)
We report the results of a national survey conducted to help public health officials understand the public's response to community mitigation interventions for a severe outbreak of pandemic influenza. Survey results suggest that if community mitigation measures are instituted, most respondents would comply with recommendations but would be challenged to do(More)
To communicate effectively with the public during an emergency, health officials need to find out in real time what Americans know and believe, whom they trust, and what actions they are taking in response to the crisis. Short-duration surveys can provide vital information to guide public officials in their response to events and their communication(More)
OBJECTIVES To shed light on how the public health community can promote the recovery of Hurricane Katrina victims and protect people in future disasters, we examined the experiences of evacuees housed in Houston area shelters 2 weeks after the hurricane. METHODS A survey was conducted September 10 through 12, 2005, with 680 randomly selected respondents(More)
BACKGROUND The potential for a bioterrorist attack involving smallpox has led to a debate about what national precautions should be taken. What is unclear is the public's knowledge of smallpox and views about precautions. METHODS We conducted a national survey of 1006 adults selected by means of random-digit dialing. Respondents were asked about their(More)
Using data from 13 surveys of the public, this article compares the public's response to severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) in Ontario (specifically, Toronto), the other Canadian provinces, and the United States, which had substantial differences in the number of SARS cases. Findings suggest that, even at a relatively low level of spread among the(More)
BACKGROUND In response to the report by the Institute of Medicine on medical errors, national groups have recommended actions to reduce the occurrence of preventable medical errors. What is not known is the level of support for these proposed changes among practicing physicians and the public. METHODS We conducted parallel national surveys of 831(More)