Being in pain and searching on the Internet to find the cause is one thing. The problem arises when the patient comes across one of the innumerable pages of alternative medicine which exist online. To avoid risks, initatives have been set up such as portal.hospitalclinic.org, in collaboration with the BBVA foundation, so that users can obtain information from 200 qualified doctors and nurses. The website, which was officially presented recently, aims to empower patients so they are able to participate actively in the process and control of their illness.
The areas most susceptible to false news are oncology, nutrition, pediatry and cosmetic dermatology. So are vaccines, which generate some of the most erroneous claims.
60% of people who use the Internet, many of them with higher education, look for health information, but that is the focus of one in every three fake claims which circulate online.
The fake news items have no publication date and are redacted as vaguely as possible. They are anonymous, do not quote reliable sources and are not signed, to avoid possible legal repercussions. They normally ask you to send the news on to warn other people, avoid bad luck, prevent death, or for other reasons. The hidden interest behind this request is to collect IP addresses, create data bases, carry out later spam campaigns or spread false information.