Facebook May Enter the Health Care Business


Facebook may be getting into the health care business, according to a recent report.

Reuters reports that unidentified sources say that the social media giant may create online "support communities" to connect Facebook users who suffer from the same illnesses. Another possibility are "preventative care" apps to help users improve their health.

The sources say that Facebook has been meeting with the health care industry, and created a new internal team to test the new health apps.

Facebook has noticed that people search for medical advice on its website, according to an ex-Facebook employee. Facebook has also noted the success of websites such as PatientsLikeMe.com where people share information about illnesses, treatments and symptoms.

Reuters notes that drug companies are currently banned from advertising prescription medications on Facebook due to privacy concerns.

Speaking of privacy concerns, the social networking site recently reversed a decision to require people to use their real names, which led to an exodus of drag performers, transgender people, and victims of domestic violence and stalking, reported Slate.com.

Many of the departing users flocked to the invitation-only social media site Ello.

Chris Cox, Facebook's vice president of product, wrote in a post, "Our policy has never been to require everyone on Facebook to use their legal name. The spirit of our policy is that everyone on Facebook uses the authentic name they use in real life."

Cox added that Facebook was trying to crack down on "bad actors" who use fake Facebook names for "impersonation, bullying, trolling, domestic violence, scams, hate speech, and more."

Sources: Facebook, Slate.com, Reuters


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