Published research assesses impact of Health Union’s e-health community model


PHILADELPHIA CREAM, July 7, 2020 / PRNewswire / – Research from Health Union that further validates the benefits of its online community model for people living with chronic conditions has been published in the july 2020 refereed issue of the Journal of Medical Internet Research. The article, titled “Evaluating the Engagement and Adaptive Support Model for People with Chronic Conditions in Online Health Communities: Combined Content Analysis” (DOI: 10.2196 / 17338), assesses how social support is provided and the role of moderation in e-health communities specifically developed under and managed by an adaptive engagement model created by Health Union.

The research used a combined mixed-method content analysis to analyze nearly 5,900 Facebook comments from six of Health Union’s online health communities to understand how key aspects of the adaptive engagement model facilitate different types of support. social. Comments were taken from IrritableBowelSyndrome.net, LungCancer.net, Migraine.com, MultipleSclerosis.net, ProstateCancer.net, and RheumatoidArthritis.net Facebook pages.

The analysis showed that people with chronic health conditions want to engage online, especially using social media, and find it helpful to support and share their experiences with others living with the same condition. health. Specifically, 58% of the comments analyzed represented expressions of social support for others, demonstrated by sharing information, expressions of empathy and encouragement towards others. Active moderation of these communities has helped maintain a safe environment that presents balanced and medically accurate information, which is a common concern of social and peer support for health issues.

“This research further reinforces what we have long known about what is needed to make an online health community truly impactful,” said co-author Amrita Bhowmick, MPH, MBA, Community Manager at Health Union and Assistant Assistant Professor at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Gillings School of Global Public Health. “When used consistently and skillfully, social support, adaptive engagement, and active moderation provide a vibrant community experience for people with chronic health conditions, promoting better physical and mental health.”

In addition to Bhowmick, the authors of the article included several current and former members of the Health Union team: Brian M. Green, MRS; Ketki Gupte, MA; Katelyn Van Horn, MSW, MPH; and Sara hayes, MPH. Megan evans, MS, of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Gillings School of Global Public Health, has also been an author.

Over the past 10 years, Health Union has launched 29 online health communities dedicated to helping people live better with specific chronic conditions. Health Union’s OHC model encourages people to take an active role in their health by providing content that matches their needs and interests while cultivating a safe environment where meaningful social relationships can flourish.

About the Health Union

Since 2010, Health Union encouraged social interactions that turn into valuable online health conversations, helping people with chronic illnesses find the information, connection and validation they seek. The company creates condition-specific online communities – posting original, daily content and continuously cultivating social conversation – to support, educate and connect millions of people with chronic and challenging health issues. Today, Health Union’s family of brands includes 29 online health communities, including LungCancer.net, ParkinsonsDisease.net, MultipleSclerosis.net and Migraine.com.

SOURCE Health Union


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