Digital healthcare is fascinating. And one of the most fascinating facets is the world of online communities, and within that, physician communities. Why? Physicians have so much to gain from exchanging with colleagues with similar questions. Healthcare organizations have so much to gain if they can target and scale their relation to physicians. Patients have everything to gain if physicians can gain insights and perhaps even professional motivation through communities. And yet, it isn't that simple. The most basic questions remain. Why should the physician join that community? Why should he or she stay? What's the business model? And in every country around the world, the history of online physician communities has evolved in a different way.
And so today we learned that WorldOne + Sermo (1.8 million healthcare professionals spanning 80 countries, including more than 385,000 US physicians) has received new financing: US$35 million from Deerfield to support the company's physician engagement platform. (Sermo had been acquired in July 2012 by WorldOne). These are not minor events in international digital health.
Nor was it a minor event in August 2011 when Doctors.Net, the British physician community leader was acquired by M3 based in Japan and the US, and we discussed it here.
Organizing international digital healthcare conferences, such as Doctors 2.0 & You, and speaking at others, such as Stanford Medicine X, I can say that the online physician community space remains very exciting.
You may just want to refresh your memory and watch our Doctors 2.0 & You 2012 panelists here. Stay tuned for even more excitement in June 2013 with our latest physician community sessions, including Sermo, DXY.cn, Dermaweb and several others
... As you wait, I am sure that the words of WorldOne's CEO will surely interest you.