Article Title

Access and the use of information technology in the older Australian population: A comparison among the healthy, chronically ill, and people with disability with and without limitation to core functioning

Abstract

Objective: To examine the access and usage of information technology in Australia among various groups of older people including healthy, chronically ill, and disabled people with and without limitations to core functional activities.

Methods: Cross-sectional population-based national health survey with stratified random sampling from the total population of people with disability, aged 60 years or older and carers of people with disability. Data were analysed using logistic regression analyses with bootstrapping resampling (a statistical method for estimating the sampling distribution of an estimator by sampling with replacement from the original sample) and estimation statistical techniques.

Results: After adjusting for demographic variables there was no significant association between health conditions and access to Internet except for those who were disabled with both physical and communication limitations. In terms of the use of the Internet a 50% reduction of odds (Odds Ratio (OR) = 0.5, 95% Confidence Intervals (CI) = 0.11-0.89) were found for this group when compared to the healthy group. A significant result was found for the disability with physical limitation only group with a 30% reduction (OR = 0.73, 95%CI = 0.50-0.95).

Conclusions: Disabled people with physical and communication limitations are more disadvantaged in terms of using the Internet. More attention should be paid to the design of computer devices for physically restricted people.

Keywords

peer-reviewed, chronic illness

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