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Picture of an American Mom: Chief Family Health Officer

By Kathy, Senior Marketing Strategist

picture American momHospital and medical marketing professionals have long respected women—especially the American Mom— as the chief family health care decision-maker. Perhaps you recognize these numbers:

  • Women make approximately 80 percent of the healthcare choices in the family
  • 85 percent: choose their children’s doctors
  • 84 percent: take the kids to appointments
  • 79 percent: ensure family members get recommended care
  • 12 percent: are caregivers
  • Women purchase 93 percent of OTC pharmaceuticals
  • Women play an increasingly stronger role in the selection of healthcare insurance
  • Women use healthcare services more than men

But with the advent of the Internet and social media, this picture is now leveraging the influence and impact of female decision-makers. Contemporary number-crunching surveys point to the fact that 70 percent of women use social sites, and along with web research, women are a significant influence factor through online communities, discussion groups, rating sites and the like.

Research reports, such as Meredith Research and HeardItFromMom.com, say that the majority of women (75 to 84 percent) share, forward, Facebook or email health-related articles and information.

Is your picture of American moms up to date?

The demographic picture of today’s American moms is changing. Here's some help in keeping the picture up to date. In a recent perspective by Pew Research Center reports there are about 85 million mothers in American. In a comparison study, Pew observes “the share of mothers with kids younger than 18 at home has declined, and that the average of a first-time mother is older" (from 21.4 in 1970 to 25.8 years in 2012.)

For a more complete picture of this important marketing demographic group, read Pew Research’s 5 questions (and answers) about American moms today. And for the longer view, consult the Women’s Health page at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention FastStats.

For more insight on this topic, see our previous articles, including:

Kathy Gaughran

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