Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Using technology to create Indian specific health information

A common criticism many Indians have of health information on the internet is that very little of it applies to India and to Indians. Indian medical websites are few and far-between - and they are often incomplete and outdated. Also, there is a major dearth of Indian in Indian lanaguages. This means that it's extremely easy for someone sitting in Bombay to find tons of information from Mayo Clinic; or to read pages and pages on rare diseases such as cystic fibrosis; but very hard to get reliable information on common Indian diseases such as malaria or typhoid !

This is a shame - and we have taken the following initiative to address this challenge. We have setup India's first health wiki at www.myhealthpedia.in.

What we have provided at present is a bare skeleton. We hope that users will add flesh to this , so that this becomes a reliable and authoritative source of patient information for Indians.

The great thing about the wiki technology we have used is that it provides a very user-friendly platform for online collaboration, so that we can develop a repository of information which is online; available 24/7; and can be updated all the time. We hope to use the "wisdom of the crowds" to provide a useful service.

The next step is to translate this information into Indian languages. We have received a grant from the Sir Ratan Tata Trust to do so, and are looking for volunteers and experts who will help us to make this project a success !

Please do sign up at www.myhealthpedia.in !
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