New Facebook Tool Encourages Preventive Health Screenings, Helps Consumers Track Decisions
But in the era where many are hesitant about Facebook's privacy protections, the success of the new health tool might rely on how much the company can soothe those fears.
Facebook Debuts Tool To Help You Get Health Screenings
Facebook has launched a new feature to help track what preventive health screenings might be recommended for you based on your age and sex. The tool, called Preventive Health, rolled out in the United States on Monday and focuses specifically on cardiovascular health, cancer screening and seasonal flu -- making recommendations such as when to get a cholesterol test or where to get a flu shot. (Howard, 10/28)
Facebook Wants To Offer You Advice On Preventive Health Care
The company says the feature is intended to encourage more people to take steps to prevent health issues. “I take care of patients every day who come in with acute heart attacks,” said Freddy Abnousi, a practicing doctor who is head of health-care research at Facebook. “Every time we bring someone back from the abyss, because that’s basically how they show up, we always wonder how we could have prevented some of this.” This new feature, Abnousi hopes, will get people to see their doctor with more regularity. (Wagner, 10/28)
Facebook Vows Strict Privacy Safeguards For Preventive-Health Tool
Facebook said it’s put up strict safeguards to protect the privacy of people who use the new tool. The company vowed not to share the data generated through the tool with third parties. It won’t let other users on Facebook see when people use the feature. Nor will it allow advertisers to target ads to users based on the information they share using the tool — though they might see targeted ads if they click through to another website or navigate away to like the page of a health care organization. Within Facebook, the data from the tool will be accessible only to a subset of employees focused on keeping the feature functional. (Robbins, 10/28)