It turns out that online patient discussion forums may not all be the noble grassroots support groups that I once believed them to be. For example, unless they are small independent online sites, or have secure academic, government or clinical funding (like Virtual Hospice, which operates its active end-of-life care community thanks to ongoing financial support from the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority and Cancer Care Manitoba), the site owners of most major online patient support groups are figuring out how to “monetize” their work. That’s how biz developers talk . . .
Make no mistake, my heart sisters: few online site owners (except for individual patients hosting those smaller private forums) are running a feel-good charity for us patients purely out of the goodness of their hearts. Continue reading “What really goes on in your friendly online patient group”