In case you missed it, our friends over at MedGadget have started a new interactive service for those with medical conditions, called HealCam. HealCam allows you to talk to other with the same condition as yours.
For example, if you have diabetes, you can be connected to a random person with diabetes.
When you click next you’re connected to another person with diabetes. Currently the following conditions are available: Diabetes, Weight Loss & Dieting, Depression, Cancer, Pregnancy and Childbirth, and Heart Disease. Other conditions are being added as well.
This model appears similar to Chatroulette, a interactive service that connects you with random people via webcam. The issues with Chatroulette have been documented in detail by the NYTimes. Basically, you often times end up seeing things you don’t want to see, and seeing people do things you don’t want to see – there is no screening process.
Thats why this current iteration of an interactive web chat experience offered by HealCam has some real potential – it targets a more selective user base. In my opinion, I think users with rare medical conditions are the ones that are most likely to benefit.
People with rare conditions often find a lack of local support groups, or friends and family who share their condition. Having the ability to talk to others with a rare condition could be a great social support to these individuals.
Better yet, HealCam could flourish by offering this service to family members taking care of loved ones with rare conditions. It would be a great place for parents of certain pediatric cancers, say Ewing’s sarcoma, to gather and discuss their child’s illness and to see how other have coped.
Either way, HealCam is definitely a revolutionary and great idea in mobile health, and we’re looking forward to seeing how it is adapted and changed in the future.