5 Things to Look for When Evaluating Online Senior Care Resources

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In today's digital age, the internet has become an indispensable tool for searching and researching; It makes sense that many people seek information about senior care options online. However, countless websites claim to offer the best advice and services, even with minimal credibility. Other sites are set-up to take advantage of senior populations through scams or deceptive offers. It is essential to ensure that the information is accurate, reliable, and trustworthy. 

“When it comes to senior care, valuable and honest information is key in decision making,” said Terry Thompkins, Senior Vice President of Operations at Chapters Living. “It is important to know what to look for when assessing the credibility of online resources.” 

1. Check the source:

The first step in evaluating online information is examining the website. Look for sites that have a credible reputation or are affiliated with established organizations, such as government health agencies, universities, or senior care communities. Trusted sources often provide accurate and up-to-date information for informed decision-making. 

2. Consider the author's expertise:

Prioritize content authored by professionals who work in the senior care field, such as geriatricians, nurses, or executive directors. Confirming their experience or academic background will allow for further validation of their qualifications in the field. Also consider the author’s intentions; Are they in a position to benefit by convincing readers to do or buy something? 

3. Look for evidence-based information:

Reliable sources should be based on scientific evidence and ideally supported by peer-reviewed studies. Reliable websites often cite their sources, linking to reputable journals, research papers, or organizational reports. Such sources demonstrate a commitment to credibility and can be trusted for accurate information.

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4. Assess the website's design and functionality:

Website design can also provide insights into the trustworthiness of an online resource. Reputable sites invest in user-friendly interfaces, easy navigation, and updated content. Professional and well-maintained websites suggest that the creators take their information seriously, further enhancing their validity.

5. Consult multiple sources:

For comprehensive and well-rounded information, consult multiple sources. Comparing various websites identifies a consensus or discrepancies, allowing for a more informed opinion. Reputable sources should generally provide consistent information on essential topics.

Sharing Information

Sites may request contact information in exchange for additional information. Typically organizations use this information to follow-up about their product or services. Before sharing information, whether online or over the phone, keep the following in mind:

  • Only share information on websites that are secure; Look for the lock icon in the url.
  • Do NOT share financial or sensitive information. This includes passwords, social security numbers, bank account numbers, and credit card numbers.
  • Trust your gut. If something seems questionable, leave the site. Trustworthy sites will not ask for information, like passwords, outside of login pages. 
  • Don’t download items or click links, especially in emails, unless they are from a credible, recognizable source.

These useful tips allow for a better assessment of online information, making the internet an even more valuable resource. Online resources offer a wealth of knowledge about senior care, but there is also value in reaching out to experts in the field, such as doctors or senior living professionals. As a dedicated and candid senior living community, we would love to provide additional insights on senior care. Contact us today

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