Introducing Medpedia

A Not-So New Idea!

By Dr. David Edward Marcinko; MBA, CMP™

[Publisher-in-Chief]

By Hope Rachel Hetico; RN, MHA, CMP™

[Managing Editor]

Medpedia, an online medical encyclopedia launching later this year, aims to have the open-source, evolving, and comprehensive nature of Wikipedia.

According to its Website

The Medpedia Project is an extraordinary global effort to collect, organize and make understandable, the world’s best information about health, medicine and the body and make it freely available on the website www.Medpedia.com

Physicians, health organizations, medical schools, hospitals, health professionals, and dedicated individuals are coming together to build the most comprehensive medical resource in the world that will benefit millions of people every year.”

The Wikipedia Difference

In a key departure from Wikipedia’s all-comers sensibility, however, the new encyclopedia will be edited only by those with advanced degrees in medicine and biomedical science, and the site is taking online applications from would-be volunteer editors – MDs, biomedical research PhDs, and clinicians who will be screened in a rigorous internal review process, according to a July 23rd press release.

Incubator Backing

The site is backed by an incubator, called Ooga Labs, and it will run text ads, while Harvard Medical School is giving the site some seed content.

Medpedia’s advisers include current and former deans from the medical schools at Harvard, Stanford and Michigan and the school of public health at UC Berkeley, while the site will pull in public domain content from the likes of the Center for Disease Control and Prevention [CDC], the National Institute of Health [NIH] and the Food and Drug Administration [FDA].

Other health and medical organizations that are supporting Medpedia include the American College of Physicians [ACP], the [Oxford Health Alliance (OxHA.org)], the Federation of Clinical Immunology Societies, [FOCIS], and the European Federation of Neurological Associations [EFNA]. These groups are contributing content and promoting participation in Medpedia to their members.

Assessment

A wiki is an electronic collection of web pages designed to enable anyone who accesses it to contribute or modify content, using a simplified internet markup language. It is named after the Hawaiian term for “quick.”

But, the concept and execution in late 2008 of www.Medpedia.com is not new or exactly as innovative as its originator’s seem to suggest; in the healthcare or any other space.

An Earlier Healthcare Success Story

For example, the Comprehensive Health Dictionary Series was started by email collaboration in 2005.  Its genesis sprang from those who suggested that changes in health and managed care appeared malignant, as many industry segments, professionals and patients suffered because of it. This tumult was so great, that many Americans and the HDS founders realized that they could no longer assume definitional stability of non-clinical health administrative terms. The resulting managerial and business chaos was legion.

And so, since knowledge is power in times of great flux, codified information protects us all from physical, economic, financial and emotional harm!

By its very nature, the Comprehensive Health Dictionary Series was ripe for electronic aggregation and modified wiki-styled creation; with periodic updates by engaged-readers working in the fluctuating health care industrial complex. Internet connectivity was the best way for the Health Dictionary Series to be edited and revised to reflect the changing lexicon of terms, as older words were retired, and newer ones continually created. 

Moreover, we did not simply listen to our colleagues, visitors, submitters and clients; we believed that true innovation means putting development tools in their hands, stepping back, and allowing them to lead the way!  And, it was so.

Coupled with our Collaborative Lexicon Query Service and a modified and moderated interactive social network, we maintained continuous subject-matter expertise, professional and user input, with peer-reviewed editors and experts; just like the Medpedia’s of today.

In fact, after our internet and email collaboration, three successful printed dictionaries were ultimately released in 2006 and 2007 as a result of the initial successful initiative; and more are to come:

The Dictionary of Health Insurance and Managed Care

http://www.amazon.com/Dictionary-Health-Insurance-Managed-Care/dp/0826149944/ref=sr_1_5?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1217414309&sr=1-5

The Dictionary of Health Economics and Finance

http://www.amazon.com/Dictionary-Health-Economics-Finance-Marcinko/dp/0826102549/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1217414309&sr=1-3

The Dictionary of Health Information Technology and Security

http://www.amazon.com/Dictionary-Health-Information-Technology-Security/dp/0826149952/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1217414309&sr=1-2

Detailed information, including Tables of Contents, Celebrity Forewords, unique features, reviews and ordering access may be obtained from: www.HealthDictionarySeries.com

Conclusion

And so, we certainly congratulate the righteous old-school founders of Medpedia on its upcoming launch. Yet, a singular query remains, considering the social networking cultural phenomena that are Facebook, MySpace, Twitter etc. “What took you so long – seriously?”

Moreover, we believe the marketing driven advertising nature of the beast will make its integrity, highly suspect [vis-a-vie big pharma].

In other words, if eyeballs can be reached and/or monetized … they can be slanted.

Please opine on this method of edited medical; knowledge aggregation; pro or con. Your comments are appreciated.

Related Information Sources:

Practice Management: http://www.springerpub.com/prod.aspx?prod_id=23759

Physician Financial Planning: http://www.jbpub.com/catalog/0763745790

Medical Risk Management: http://www.jbpub.com/catalog/9780763733421

Healthcare Organizations: www.HealthcareFinancials.com

Health Administration Terms: www.HealthDictionarySeries.com

Physician Advisors: www.CertifiedMedicalPlanner.com

Speaker: If you need a moderator or speaker for an upcoming event, Dr. David E. Marcinko; MBA – Publisher-in-Chief of the Executive-Post – is available for seminar or speaking engagements. Contact: MarcinkoAdvisors@msn.com  or Bio: www.stpub.com/pubs/authors/MARCINKO.htm

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