Exploring web-mediated communication: A genre-based linguistic study for new patterns of doctor–patient interaction in online environment
- Authors: Zummo, M.
- Publication year: 2015
- Type: Articolo in rivista (Articolo in rivista)
- OA Link: http://hdl.handle.net/10447/206992
This paper questions the nature of the communicative event that takes place in online contexts between doctors and web-users, showing computer-mediated linguistic norms and discussing the nature of the patients' roles. Based on an analysis of 1005 posts occurring between doctors and the users of health service websites, I analyse how doctor-patient communication is affected by the medium and how health professionals overcome issues concerning the virtual medical visit. Results that (a) online medical answers offer a different service from that expected by users, as doctors cannot always fulfill patient requests, and (b) net consultations use aspects of traditional doctor-patient exchange and yet present a language and a style that are affected by the computer-mediated environment. Additionally, it seems that this new form leads to a different model of doctor-patient relationship. The findings are intended to provide new insights into web-based discourse in doctor-patient communication and to demonstrate the mergence of a new style in medical communication.