SORT­ING THE IN­FOR­MA­TION

Sunday Mail - Body and Soul - - FRONT PAGE -

Leon Piter­man, a pro­fes­sor of gen­eral prac­tice at Vic­to­ria’s Monash Univer­sity, says try­ing to use Google to di­ag­nose a health con­di­tion is fraught with dan­ger.

Piter­man heads the ad­vi­sory board of doc­tors be­hind healt­hand.com, a new web­site offering an­i­ma­tions and ver­i­fied in­for­ma­tion on about 400 health con­di­tions, from why ba­bies refuse to eat to the cause of headaches and treat­ing ana­phy­laxis.

“If you’re just read­ing a page out of Google and you don’t know who’s be­hind the in­for­ma­tion, you can’t al­ways take it at face value,” he says. “Be­ing able to crit­i­cally ap­praise the in­for­ma­tion isn’t a skill ev­ery­one has. It also needs to be pre­sented in a sim­ple to understand form.”

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