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Dial-a-dietitian : an exploratory study of client use Finlayson, Joan Marjorie


This study investigates client use of a telephone information service. An exploratory study was undertaken of a Dial-A-Dietitian nutrition information service to obtain a description of the callers, frequency of caller use of the service, and action taken by the callers after receiving the information. The data were obtained from records in the Dial-A-Dietitian office and by interviewing two randomly selected samples of callers by telephone one week after they had contacted the service with a question about nutrition. Information collected was age, sex, years spent in school, and perceived health status. Frequency of caller use was determined by whether a caller was a first time caller or one who had called at least once in the past year. The action taken was described as a performance, conduct, or procedure that a person followed after receiving information. The callers were described as women with an average age of 51 years who spent 12 or more years in school. They considered their health to be excellent/good. Their nutritional interests were equally divided between normal and therapeutic nutrition. Sixty-five percent of the callers were regular users. Approximately 42% of the callers took some identifiable action as a result of receiving information from the service.

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