Monday, June 27, 2011

Google It! (Or not)

From the Time Flies Dept: Over three years ago, we reported on Google's EMR (Electronic Medical Records) initiative "Google Health," which was touted as "a long-anticipated U.S. health information service that combines the leading Web company's classic search services with a user's personal health records online."

Partnering with Walgreen's and CVS, not to mention the highly esteemed Cleveland Clinic, the effort was meant to bring the efficiency of data warehousing to the health care field.

So, how's that working out?

About as well as might be expected:

"Google is giving up on its vision of helping people live healthier lives with online personal health records. ... Google Health never really caught on."

To some extent, that's a hazard quite common to path breakers, and the search engine giant (and its partners) faced a significant field of competitors, not to mention a natural reluctance on the part of us patients to entrust our private health information to the vagaries of tech.

The true reason, though, may be much simpler. According to a former Google Health manager, most folks weren't too enthusiastic about typing in a bunch of personal information:

"In the end ... it was an experiment that did not have a compelling consumer proposition.”

No kidding.

[Hat Tip: Bob V]
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