Exploring Affordable Care Act and Health Insurance Information Seeking with Google Trends

Emily Vardell, Danica White

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Objective: This study investigates how Google searches for health insurance and Affordable Care Act (ACA) information vary over time, specifically the time leading up to a presidential election, and whether they vary geographically by states’ political voting patterns. Methods: Google Trends data from 2009 to 2017 were captured for the terms: Obamacare, Affordable Care Act, ACA, and health insurance. Results: The results demonstrate searches for Obamacare were higher during election periods and that searches vary geographically by the political affiliation of the presidential candidate elected in each state. Conclusions: Differences in search terms lead to differences in search results, meaning that some geographic areas are more likely to locate less authoritative information, which in turn may affect their opinions concerning health care reform. Considering the growing number of people who consult Google for information, it is important to explore how Google search outcomes can impact the consumer health information that is being located and consumed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)269-277
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Consumer Health on the Internet
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 2 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Health(social science)


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