Objectives : To investigate the availability and demand for overall cancer-related information, and to establish a basic plan for the construction of a cancer database and information system based on the research results from Korea. Methods : Postal and telephone surveys were carried out, between August 2001 and November 2001, of 323 affiliated faculty professors from medical universities and colleges in Korea. The data were analyzed with descriptive statistical methods, with regard to the present status and demand for health and cancer-related information. Results : Most (over 80%) subjects studied utilized the health-related information provided on Internet website from foreign countries, such as Medline, but similar comprehensive information system lacked in Korea. The construction of a cancer-related database of domestic research results was revealed to be in a great demand. Information on registration and statistics (52.8%), study results (48.5%) and study resources (37.4%) were the major ingredients required in the database. In constructing a database of the cancer-related research results, a full-text service, continuous updating of data, and the development of standardized user-friendly searching tool were regarded as the necessary components. The formulation of an information sharing system, regarding cancer-related clinical trials, was investigated as being quite feasible. Conclusion : This study demonstrated the great importance of cancer information systems, and much demand for an available cancer-related database based on Korean research results.
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