Whether we want to accept it or not, we now live in a world where nearly all information we seek is literally at the click of a button.
The impact for medical specialists is that not only has Google changed the world we live in (and Google knows it), it has changed how people seek diagnoses of a medical symptom.
It has now become commonplace that when people have a health concern they search online to get an array of different answers. And that’s the kicker - anyone who has had a ‘consultation’ with Doctor Google is familiar with the diverse and sometimes unsettling range of results that they receive.
Finding what they need
But being bombarded with varied information on these searches may be a thing of the past.
In an attempt to come up with better search results to specific health questions, Google has decided to upgrade and improve its health results and has now joined forces with the Mayo Clinic.
The upgrade by Google will provide better advice upfront, and even list possible treatment options.
For example, a search for arthritis will show, beside the resulting links, a few basic facts about arthritis and include a definition. To ensure quality and accuracy, all of the gathered facts have been confirmed by medical doctors, which have then been checked for accuracy by Mayo Clinic clinicians.
“The goal of this new feature is to provide medical information in a digestible way and to get basic answers quickly. Using Mayo Clinic as a primary source, Google provides information about symptoms and treatments, whether or not it's critical or contagious, what ages it typically affects, and more,” a spokesman said.
Google is intended for informational purposes only
Should Doctor Google be considered competition - No.
Google is not going to replace the need for Doctors. Google does not give patient care. It does not think in terms of age, sex, or ethnicity. It does not know the patient history, if the person smokes cigarettes, drinks alcohol or has been in contact with someone who is contagious.
For medical professionals conducting a diagnosis and subsequent treatment, the improvement of Doctor Google is not something to be concerned about.
But it is a reason why your practice/business needs to have a technically sound website that looks professional, has sound quality “Google” ranking content about your practice and your services, and is updated regularly.
Why? So you are seen as the authority and not your competitors.
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