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The search for online health information can quickly overwhelm most people. There is so much information available that it often requires users to sort through a maze of websites and medical information which may or may not be relevant. However a new startup aims to change that. Medivizor is a website that helps users sort through all the online health information to deliver relevant medical information. Medivizor is the first company to provide truly personalized information and updates for people with serious medical conditions. It is founded and supported by doctors’ medical expertise and an interdisciplinary team of entrepreneurs with IT expertise. Will they succeed ? It depends on whether users find their service valuable but more importantly if they can stay on top of new medical information.
Currently Medivizor is by “invitation only” which is not good news for patients. People want health information at THEIR convenience and are not likely to go back to a website that is not 100% up and running. The other challenge is to ensure that the medical information they have is relevant and that they are allowed to use ALL the information available to patients from ALL health websites. Some websites, for example, may not want their content repurposed on another site. However the idea is sound.I always though that Google should offer a special search option for health information removing the SPAM sites that so many people try to avoid but over the past few years Google has improved the user experience. That alone is a challenge for Medivizor as a majority of people (close to 80%) start their search for health information with a search engine. The other challenge is getting people to come back to the site. Will, for example, people want to stay abreast of health information around conditions like high blood pressure or high cholesterol ? It has been my experience through research with patients that they only search for health information at specific times within the healthcare transaction model. There are some people though that want to stay on top of health information effecting them, Type one diabetics have a strong online presence and sense of community.
Time will tell if Medivizor is successful. While a lot of startups sound like good ideas they often don’t have the money or time to conduct in-depth research and usability studies that can lead to a successful website.