Google Kills Off Personal Health Records Service

A fair bit of my corporate work and journalistic work touches on the electronic medical records space, so it is with some interest that I note the passing of Google Health.

The New York Times:

Google Health never really caught on. In a posting on the company’s blog on Friday, Aaron Brown, senior product manager for Google Health, wrote that the goal was to “translate our successful consumer-centered approach from other domains to health care and have a real impact on the day-to-day health experiences of millions of our users.”

Yet, after three years, Mr. Brown said, “Google Health is not having the broad impact we had hoped it would.”

Google’s exit from the market leaves Microsoft’s HealthVault as the only serious contender in the opt-in, online personal health records market, though WebMD, RelayHealth and Dossia also occupy niches.

In the end, Google’s obit for the service, which is to be deactivated on Jan. 1, 2012, may include a line that the service simply put too much onus on consumers to keep track of their own medical records. Again, NYT:

Adam Bosworth, a former manager of Google Health, who left in 2007 before the service was introduced, said the service could not overcome the obstacle of requiring people to laboriously put in their own data.

“In the end,” Mr. Bosworth said, “it was an experiment that did not have a compelling consumer proposition.”


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