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Understanding Health Behavior Using Social Network Analysis

Authors: Namrata Mishra


Health of a person plays a vital role in the collective health of his community and hence the well-being of the society as a whole. But, in today’s fast paced technology driven world, health issues are increasingly being associated with human behaviors – their lifestyle. Social networks have tremendous impact on the health behavior of individuals. Many researchers have used social network analysis to understand human behavior that implicates their social and economic environments. It would be interesting to use a similar analysis to understand human behaviors that have health implications. This paper focuses on concepts of those behavioural analyses that have health implications using social networks analysis and provides possible algorithmic approaches. The results of these approaches can be used by the governing authorities for rolling out health plans, benefits and take preventive measures, while the pharmaceutical companies can target specific markets, helping health insurance companies to better model their insurance plans.

Keywords: Health Behaviors, Social Network Analysis, breadth first search, directed graph

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