Health and Technology

, Volume 3, Issue 1, pp 37–50 | Cite as

Toward a typology of health 2.0 collaboration platforms and websites

Original Paper

Abstract

During the past decade, the proliferation of social media has infiltrated various sectors of social and business communications. Of particular interest is the growth of health related websites and the healthcare sector’s adoption of social media. In this paper, we develop a typology of Health 2.0 collaboration platforms and websites. Two major types of actors within Health 2.0 websites are health professionals (P) and health consumers (C). Each actor can serve as either support provider or support recipient. We focus on the six major Health 2.0 collaboration platforms including health blogs, physician-ratings, medicine-ratings, online health social networks, health discussion boards, and ask-a-doctor. We categorize these platforms into four major types including professional-to-professional (P2P), professional-to-consumer (P2C), consumer-to-consumer (C2C), and consumer-to-professional (C2P). Then, based on the combination of collaboration platforms provided by Health 2.0 websites, we categorize these websites into P2P, P2C, C2C, and C2P types. We describe each type and utilize the typology to investigate 20 Health 2.0 websites and the collaboration platforms they provide. Our typology can be used as groundwork for future research on health social media.

Keywords

Health 2.0 Medicine 2.0 Health social media Virtual health communities Collaboration platforms Typology 

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Copyright information

© IUPESM and Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Information Systems and Cyber Security, College of BusinessThe University of Texas at San AntonioSan AntonioUSA

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