Libraries at University of Nebraska-Lincoln




The study assessed the utilization of health information resources by diabetic patients in Benue State Nigeria. Specifically, the study looked at: types of health information resources required by diabetic patients, sources of accessing health information, health information resources utilized, extent of utilization of health information resources and the challenges of utilization of health information resources by diabetic patients in Benue state. Five specific objectives with corresponding research questions guided the study. The study adopted a descriptive research design. The population of the study comprised of all the 1,698 registered diabetic patients in 2017 and 2018 in Benue State. A sample size of 324 diabetic patients in the registered hospitals under study was drawn for the study using Taro Yamen formula for sample size determination. The instrument for data collection was a structured questionnaire titled “Assessment of Utilization of Health Information Resources by Diabetic Patients Questionnaire” (AUHIRDPBSQ). The questionnaire was validated by three experts. The reliability of the questionnaire was established using Cronbach Alpha method and a reliability coefficient of 0.83 was obtained. Data collected was analysed using Frequency Counts, Percentages, Mean and Standard Deviation to answer the research questions. Findings of the study revealed that information resources such as medical newspapers, medical magazines, medical brochures, treatment fact sheet, medical newsletters, medical posters, medical bill boards and medical leaflet among other information resources are required by diabetic patients in Benue State. The finding also revealed that; medical practitioners, nurses, other health workers, other diabetic patients, television programs and radio programs are the sources of accessing health information by diabetic patient in Benue State. The finding equally revealed that health information resources such as treatment fact sheet, medical posters, medical bill boards, medical leaflets and medical videos are utilized to a low extent by the diabetic patients. Lack of health information resources, difficulties in understanding the available health information resources, lack of applicability of health information resources and distance to health information sources among others were identified as the challenges of utilization of health information resources by diabetic patients in Benue State. Based on the findings, it was concluded that information is a vital tool for the wellbeing of diabetic patients in Benue State. The study recommended among others that, Hospital libraries through their collection development policies should acquire and provide relevant information resources in local languages for diabetic patients to cater for their health information needs; Hospital libraries should endeavor to provide user education programmes for diabetic patients that can acquaint them with knowledge on how to use hospital library resources and services to address their health information needs and librarians in hospitals should consider playing Videos/ DVD records on diabetes management techniques and appropriate diets in patient’s waiting room such that patients who are less inclined to talk to the other patients or to read the pamphlets at the hospital, will receive some information on diabetes in another format.