WEGO Health is launching WEGOHealth.tv, an ad-supported online TV network with channels on ailments like diabetes. It has gone live in its beta phase.

In what it calls "conversation-style videos," WEGOHealth.tv will feature leaders in health social media--bloggers, essentially, most of whom reach more than 15,000 people per month--sharing their communities’ experiences, insight and expertise.

Videos are produced through collaboration with one or more of these so-called "health activists," organised into thematic video channels. Initial channel topics include breast cancer, diabetes, joint pain and multiple sclerosis, health issues faced by millions of Americans each day.

Segment examples include:

•Diabetes: Fact vs Fiction, where Ronnie Gregory notes, "As a Diabetic advocate, I find the stigmas surrounding the disease are very tough to break. Diabetes can affect each and every one of us."

•Are You a Cancer 'Victim?', in which Alicia Staley explains, "I don’t think I would be able to go through the breast cancer experiences with the attitude that I did if I was going to play victim."

•Staying Active with Joint Pain, where Lisa Copen recommends, "When you have a chronic condition, especially one that has joint pain, you don’t want to push yourself until you feel pain because that could be doing damage."

"We’re driving consumer health engagement by dedicating an entire video channel to health activists, whose trust, and whose impact in health social media make them some of the most highly regarded voices online," said Jack Barrette, WEGO Health founder and CEO, in a statement. "We are taking these Health Activists off their keyboards and onto the airwaves to amplify their voices and reach an even greater audience. Our goal is simple: unleash the power of video to help motivate consumers to take ownership of their health and their families’ health. We believe empowered consumers will drive substantial, positive change in healthcare."

Michelle Clancy | 07-07-2011