HHS launches WebMD health information pilot

The Health and Human Services Department has started distributing its consumer health information on a new HHS "channel" on popular online site WebMD.

HHS Secretary Tommy Thompson said today that he launched the nine-month pilot at hhs.webmd.com to make life-saving health information more widely and rapidly available in the event of a major public health emergency.

"The Web has become an important tool for government to communicate with its citizens, and this new partnership with WebMD will greatly expand our ability to empower Americans through the Web to improve their health and prevent disease," Thompson said.

The new site also supports HHS' building biodefense preparedness, he said.

HHS will select health content supporting national priorities and relevant to a general consumer audience from the broad range of information produced by HHS agencies.

WebMD will make the information available in an HHS-branded educational center on WebMD Health and through WebMD's partner health sites, including MSN Health with WebMD and AOL Health with WebMD. Topics will include physical activity, nutrition, preventive screening and diabetes.

The WebMD channel will feature information from across HHS agencies that disseminate health information for the general public. They include the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Food and Drug Administration, the National Institutes of Health, the President's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

About the Author

Mary Mosquera is a reporter for Federal Computer Week.

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