New ways for UK licensed healthcare professionals to reach viewers on YouTube
Jun 12, 2023 – minute read
Jun 12, 2023 – minute read
We know that when it comes to healthcare people trust professionals to provide them with the best information. Traditionally however, the opportunity for healthcare professionals to inform and educate their patients has largely stopped at the clinic door.
That’s why YouTube Health has been working on ways to make it easier for people to find reliable information from licensed healthcare professionals on the platform.
With over two billion views of health condition videos in the UK in 2021, this new step will allow us to expand YouTube’s health shelves to include high quality information from an even wider group of healthcare channels across the UK
Last year we introduced two product features globally to help people more easily navigate and evaluate health information. Adding health source information panels on videos to help viewers identify content from authoritative sources and health content shelves that more effectively highlight videos from these sources when you search for specific health topics.
Today we are building on that work by opening up applications for UK licensed doctors, nurses, psychologists, and health organizations to make their channels eligible for our health product features. This includes health source information panels that help viewers identify videos from authoritative sources, and health content shelves that highlight videos from these sources when you search for health topics, so people can more easily navigate and evaluate health information online.
With 96% of online adults in the UK using YouTube on average each month in the first half of 2022, and over two billion views of health condition videos in the UK in 2021, this new step will allow us to expand YouTube’s health shelves to include high quality information from an even wider group of healthcare channels across the UK, thereby incorporating a greater diversity of voices.
In order to expand the categories that are eligible for our health features, an expert panel convened by the National Academy of Medicine (NAM), the Council of Medical Speciality Societies (CMSS) and the World Health Organization (WHO) published a set of principles on identifying credible sources. Subsequently, we partnered with the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges (AoMRC), who convened an advisory group of UK experts (including the General Medical Council, NHS England, the Royal College of Nursing, and the Patient Information Forum) to produce a set of principles which complements the NAM, CMSS and WHO work for UK application, to assist YouTube in more effectively assuring the credibility of providers of health information.
Professor Dame Helen Stokes-Lampard, Chair of the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges said, ‘We all know how difficult it can be to differentiate between healthcare information from trusted and reliable sources, and content which is inaccurate or of doubtful provenance. We were delighted therefore when YouTube asked to partner with us to help find a solution. I am pleased to say we have been able to draw on our own expertise and that of organizations from across the UK healthcare landscape to produce an easy to apply set of principles which will ultimately benefit everyone who turns to YouTube seeking trustworthy health information.’
In the coming months, eligible channels that have applied through this process will be given a health source information panel that identifies them as a licensed healthcare professional and their videos will be eligible to appear in relevant search results in health content shelves. Applicable health channels in the UK can apply from June 12th at health.youtube, and we’ll continue to expand availability to other markets and additional healthcare professions in the future.
This is a big step towards helping people more easily find and connect with content that comes from the extraordinary community of health creators on YouTube – the smart, dedicated and creative individuals and organizations who are transforming the ways that we share medical information. Whether you have busted medical myths with Doctor O’Donovan, learned about period pain from Dr Simi Adedeji, found ways to cope with anxiety through Dr. Julie, or better understood breast cancer thanks to Cancer Research UK, there are communities on YouTube that are helping people become more informed, engaged and empowered about their health.
Dr Simi Adedeji, GP Partner and Content Creator said, ‘The health features will help viewers to identify credible health information by raising visibility of expert voices. As a GP, the availability of health shelves allows me to guide patients towards reliable, high-quality content that they can revisit at their convenience. By consuming this content at their own pace patients can reinforce the health information they receive, and gain a sense of empowerment in their personal health journey.’
In a recent survey of primary care doctors by clinical service providers Cognitant, eConsult, and EMIS, 93% of doctors thought sharing videos was helpful in educating patients about their health, and one third of the doctors mentioned YouTube among their top 5 preferred online sources of information to share with patients. Effective communication is at the heart of improving people’s health, and we’re excited for this next phase in our work to connect the UK population with authoritative health information that is evidence-based and culturally relevant.