Reader's Digest, OrganizedWisdom Team Up on Health Expert Search

Health advice site OrganizedWisdom will share its network of health experts with Reader's Digest, online and in print.

OrganizedWisdom, a startup that aggregates online health advice, has formed a partnership with Reader's Digest to allow readers to search for experts within the publication's health and wellness channel.

Under the deal, OrganizedWisdom will cull articles from medical journals and online content for RD's relaunched site. The joint advice channel will also appear on OrganizedWisdom's site.

RD will draw on advice from OrganizedWisdom's more than 5,000 health experts, who share tips on OrganizedWisdom's Web platform. Reader's Digest Association produces the world's largest circulation magazine in addition to 78 branded Web sites, according to the publisher.

"This is a year of tremendous growth and innovation for the Reader's Digest brand with a return to our roots as expert content curator and the launch of a range of new, digitally driven products, ensuring that consumers can experience Reader's Digest however they choose," Dan Lagani, president of Reader's Digest Media, said in a statement.

"The partnership with OrganizedWisdom extends our ability to deliver trusted, time-saving insights beyond the Reader's Digest Version website and mobile platforms," Lagani added.

Founded in 2007, OrganizedWisdom reaches into 300,000 doctor's offices with a printed list of links called WisdomCards, Steven Krein, OrganizedWisdom's CEO and co-founder, told eWEEK.

WisdomCards resemble online flash cards organized under Overview, Resources, Stats and Experts. The WisdomCards will also appear in the RD print publication as well as on pamphlets in more than 300,000 doctor's offices.

The agreement with Reader's Digest announced Feb. 4 is part of a push by OrganizedWisdom to form a partnership with traditional media. On Feb. 10 OrganizedWisdom announced that Gerald Levin, a former Time Warner CEO, would join the company as a board member and investor.

Additional media properties will soon link up with OrganizedWisdom's network of health experts, Krein said. By working with traditional media, OrganizedWisdom also aims to encourage a new generation of health experts to embrace digital media, according to the company.

The Web platform's focus is to close an "online health gap" between a doctor's visit and the Internet-or medical professionals and patients, Krein explained.

"Despite the incredible amount of consumers asking questions, few doctors have been online," Krein notes. "Over the last year, that change has been incredible-there's a huge trend."

Through what it calls "digital mapping," OrganizedWisdom is able to connect patients or readers with the right experts. "Our belief is the only way to close the online health gap is to get doctors to participate and use internet media," Krein said.

OrganizedWisdom also connects doctors and patients through its Twitter and Facebook pages. Medical professionals providing advice through OrganizedWisdom include researchers, nutritionists and therapists.

With doctors themselves providing direct health advice through links, patients are able to trust the information they receive, Krein suggests.

"We are a trust filter for helping people find those resources," he said. "We have a site that organizes experts, transparently identifies health experts, and we allow them to present links to our patients," he said.

Unlike other online health sites such as WebMD, OrganizedWisdom doesn't publish original content and license online encyclopedias, according to Krein. Its focus is a network of health and wellness experts answering questions.

"We're not trying to be a Web portal," Krein said. "We're trying to be a platform for health and wellness experts."