OMNI Health Media Develops Cancer Social Media Platform for Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

For Immediate Release October 9, 2012

OMNI Health Media Develops Cancer Social Media Platform for Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

Dana-Farber helps cancer patients connect and support each other.

SUN VALLEY ID-OmniHealthMedia develops social media platform for Dana-Farber.

Boston, MA & Sun Valley, ID – OMNI Health Media announces that Dana-Farber Cancer Institute launched a CancerConnect community to provide online support to people with cancer.

This community will be part of the national CancerConnect.com initiative. Research increasingly shows that cancer patients seek validation, information, and support via social media. Unlike other social media platforms, CancerConnect allows individuals to interact in a HIPPA-compliant, confidential, safe, and secure environment.  As part of this program, members of the Dana-Farber community can also participate in more than sixty disease-specific national communities for individuals with similar interests. Cancer-specific groups are available, as well as groups focused on care giving, health and wellness, clinical trials, insurance, nutrition, and survivorship to provide support for anyone affected by a diagnosis of cancer. Together, the organizations offer an on-line destination populated with rich content to support the many ongoing needs of individuals battling cancer.

Currently, more than 15,000 cancer patients are interacting with and supporting each other on the CancerConnect platform, which is now used by Roswell Park Cancer Institute, The Seattle Cancer Care Alliance, Loyola University Medical Center, The Ohio State James Cancer Institute, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, and other leading providers of cancer care.  Recently, a similar platform for patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis was launched; www.TheRAConnection.com

Dr. Charles Weaver,  founder and CEO of Omni Health Media, stated that “We are excited that Dana-Farber has elected to use CancerConnect to support their patients and their families and those interested in learning more about Dana-Farber programs and services. This will be the secondCancerConnect community launched by Dana-Farber. Similar programs exist for young adults with cancer and their caregivers.  The Young Adult Program (YAP) recently launched www.dana-farber.org/yap, which was created with input from patients and survivors to provide coping-skill resources, real-time online support groups, and archived educational workshops. It also gives patients an opportunity to create profiles, “friend” or instant message others, and post comments and videos.”

“It’s helpful for young adults to have a place where they can connect with other cancer patients their age and get support that they otherwise can’t necessarily get from family or friends,” says Chris Guilfoil, a patient and member of Dana-Farber’s  YAP website focus group. “As a patient, it’s sometimes hard to talk to friends or coworkers who don’t understand what we’re going through in dealing with cancer. In this community, everyone gets it.”

About OMNI Health Media: OMNI Health Media is a leading specialty publisher of health-related information with an emphasis on cancer, and on line applications and websites specifically for consumers. Established in 1996, OMNI develops and distributes multi-media health education content and programming, with an emphasis on cancer and women’s health. OMNI has developed over 200 websites and supplies educational content and programming to over 2700 physicians for use on cancer center and clinic websites, including CancerConnect.com. OMNI’s award-wining content programs reach over 1 million seekers of cancer information in English, Japanese, and Spanish each month. http://omnihealthmedia.com

About CancerConnect: CancerConnect.com is the leading social network for cancer patients, their friends, and family. This unique online application was developed by OMNI Health Media and combines a robust information platform consisting of current comprehensive information on cancer with a social network. It is populated with rich content to support the many ongoing needs of individuals battling cancer and is comprised of communities of individuals with similar interests in the area of cancer. The CancerConnect application is also available as a fully functional “private label” social network for people with cancer, their caregivers, and others who are interested in staying up-to-date about the set of diseases known as cancer. CancerConnect is used by Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, Roswell Park Cancer Inst., The Ohio State James Cancer Inst., the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance and other leading centers. CancerConnect is licensed to hospitals and cancer clinics to enhance their Web sites, improve SEO, and allow cancer patients to be part of a social community without leaving the clinic. Disease-specific groups, as well as groups focused on care giving, health and wellness, and nutrition all exist to provide support for anyone affected by a diagnosis of cancer.

Contact chweaver@omnihealthmedia.com

About Dana-Farber Cancer Institute (www.dana-farber.org) Dana-Farber is a principal teaching affiliate of the Harvard Medical School and is among the leading cancer research and care centers in the United States. It is a founding member of the Dana-Farber/Harvard Cancer Center (DF/HCC), designated a comprehensive cancer center by the National Cancer Institute. It provides adult cancer care with Brigham and Women’s Hospital as Dana-Farber/Brigham and Women’s Cancer Center and it provides pediatric care with Boston Children’s Hospital as Dana-Farber/Children’s Hospital Cancer Center. Dana-Farber is the top ranked cancer center in New England, according to U.S. News & World Report, and one of the largest recipients among independent hospitals of National Cancer Institute and National Institutes of Health grant funding.

Follow Dana-Farber on Twitter: @danafarber
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