There seems to be a rise in niche social media sites to no surprise. It also seems logical that healthcare would be a ripe field for this. Here are a few of the current ones.
Sermo is an online community for docs. It describes itself as a site where “physicians aggregate observations from their daily practice and then - rapidly and in large numbers - challenge or corroborate each others opinions.” They claim to authenticate and credential physicians in real-time when they register and then re-validate them with every sign in to ensure that only licensed docs participate. Whne a doctor wants to share a medical observation, they create a posting. They can vote on someone else’s posting. They can add to the discussion in the comments sections. Sermo is described as a Facebook for doctors but it seems more like digg for docs. Unlike digg they make their money by letting financial institutions, government agencies and healthcare institutions have access to the aggregated conversations.
PatientsLikeMe is somewhat like Sermo except that it is for patients. You can share your experiences, find patients like you, and learn from the experiences of others. Active communities include ALS (Lou Gehrig's Disease), Multiple Sclerosis, Parkinson's Disease/PSP, and HIV/AIDS. This seems to be a web 2.0 upgrade of the patient online forums.
PeerClip is social book marking for docs, It enables US physicians to organize their medical literature online and to share and discuss content with their peers. Users can also take advantage of PeerClip’s automated tools to discover other useful content. Here is a podcast interview with the CEO of PeerClip, Scott McQuigg. Thanks to Hylton Jolliffe to pointing out this one.
MDJunction is a health related social network, a center for Online Support Groups. I have written about it before, see The MDjunction Story – A Healthcare Community Site. It appears to be still going strong.
RateMDs has been around for a while. It now has 369,041 ratings of 117,401 doctors. It also has blogs, chat rooms, polls, and forums. They claim to average about 400 new ratings a day.
WEGO Health combines medical experts and patient’s experiences. It is a content aggregator that identifies, ranks and organizes health and wellness content online and makes it easy to access. They combine the knowledge of health experts with hundreds of volunteer reviewers who have a deep, personal connection to a health condition.
WeHaveMS - Here is a new site that is a social networking sie for those with Multiple Sclerosis.