It’s a bit of a mindbender for some of us here at Medgadget, but Google Health was kind of unveiled yesterday, and one of Medgadget’s own, Dr. Enoch Choi, is kind of working with them. [that’s what we get for missing staff meetings — ed.]
Google Health is really just part of Google Co-Op, a massive new tagging system that’s a little like del.icio.us. It goes back to our murky speculation on Tuesday, when we wondered just who would select the health sites that Google would earmark as “for patients” or “practice guidelines” for physicians. Well, that task seems to fall to volunteers like Enoch.
He explains it better on his personal blog:
The work I’m doing with Google Co-op involves helping make a list of the URL (universal resource locator, the web address) of websites to improve health-related searches. These labels will appear at the top of Google search results for search queries regarding any health related term….
I’m passionate in trying to apply new technologies to improve the health of my patients…. Most of my patients use google for search, and the more I can help make high quality content more discoverable, the better.
I won’t be shown in the directory of entities you can subscribe to. Here’s a link to my profile page on Google Co-op. I’ll be doing labelings, and if you all like the quality of the sites I label, please feel free to tell others to subscribe to me. You can always unsubscribe.
…My links at Google are ones I think are reputable. I’m not saying this is the case for other co-op linkers, that’s just me. I can’t say actually what the methodology is for any other co-op linkers, ’cause I don’t know. This is just my way, and the tags are what I think they should be.
To be clear, my tagging has nothing to do with my clinic, is not endorsed by them, and you shouldn’t consider my tagging of these links as a recommendation for you to act on a treatment that a particular search result you get suggests is a good idea.
So all our fears about Google Health putting us out of a job were unfounded. Well, sure, someday, patients may be able to go straight to Google Health and bypass doctors altogether, but hopefully before then, Google will have hired all of us and given us some stock options, to boot.
More from Google Co-op…