People going online continues to increase with new tools and services such as Facebook, Flickr, and MySpace. Such tools provide profound changes in the way we communicate and share data. Personal Health Records have emerged as a new opportunity for patients. These activities point toward Web 2.0, including the social computing phenomena, and more importantly to the Healthcare 2.0 environment. Healthcare 2.0 is a network based on Web 2.0 that empowers the user to share medical records, diaries, information, etc. This paper explores the challenges and highlights the areas of research.
As Internet access proliferates and technology becomes more accessible, the number of people online has been increasing. Web 2.0 and the social computing phenomena (such as Facebook, Friendster, Flickr, YouTube, Blogger, and MySpace) are creating a new reality on the Web: Users are changing from consumers of Web-available information and resources to generators of information and content. Moving beyond telehealth and Web sites, the push toward Personal Health Records has emerged as a new option for patients to take control of their medical data and to become active participants in the push toward widespread digitized healthcare. There is minimal research on the impact of Web 2.0 in healthcare. This paper reviews the changing patient-physician relationship in the Healthcare 2.0 environment, explores the technological challenges, and highlights areas for research.
Randeree, Ebrahim, Telemedicine and e-Health, 15(3), 255-260, DOI: 10.1089/tmj.2008.0093