You can trust the information on Health Hippo because we have a thorough, transparent process for how we source and vet the information, free from any dependency on paid advertisements to buy a product or make an appointment. Our approach taps into the views of many medical experts, rather than just one doctor with just one view.
Our process includes three basic steps: first, we select the health condition; next, we research the condition; and then, we test and finalize the condition.
Selecting the Condition
Selecting the health condition is a careful process. To serve you well, we think it’s important to start by looking at the vast data about what you and fellow consumers researching online. There is significant traffic for a wide range of health conditions and we are insatiably curious about using the words that consumers actually use to search for the health issue. For instance, there is greater traffic for the term “hypertension” than there is for the term “high blood pressure.” We then pressure-test and evaluate the quality of, and problems with, the information provided on the web sites and pages that consumers are going to currently for that health condition, looking at the specific pages that comprise over 80% of the web traffic. We prioritize conditions where there is an opportunity to do a much better job in popularizing accurate information. We examine the top questions that dominate consumer search for that condition and document the answers provided. And, once we are sure we have a high-volume condition that we can do a better job with, we’ll finalize our selection and set a launch date for that condition on Health Hippo.
Researching the Condition
Then the real work starts! We research the condition thoroughly. We read a number of clinical resources such as UpToDate and others like it that provide meaningful content behind physician-accessed paywalls. We do a complete inventory of content from major medical associations, including from condition-specific, emergency medicine, pharmacist, physical therapy, nursing science, dentistry, and other research science associations. We look for the best work globally. We consider both non-traditional as well as traditional medicine. We complete this review, of anywhere from 100 to 500 sources and expert perspectives, and write about the condition in Health Hippo’s structured format. Borrowing from Mark Twain, who famously apologized for not having time to write a short letter, we take the time to condense all the information into Health Hippo’s concise structured format. This includes a short, tight set of information about diagnosis, causes, treatment, and what to expect, with assignment of Stoplight Ratings, Confidence Grades, and a few, select citations.
As a side note, UpToDate is a particular important resource that is accessed by a great majority of physicians. Read this tribute to Burton (Bud) Rose who is eulogized here as the unheralded Steve Jobs of medicine. At Health Hippo, we agree with this comparison.
Testing and Finalizing Our Report
Our third and last step is to test and finalize our report about the condition. We gather feedback about our write-up from physicians and care providers. We also gather consumer feedback, including specific tests of reading ease and ensuring we can achieve our promise to you of “clear health information in 10 minutes” for that condition. We supplement the information with photographic images, illustrations, charts, videos, resources and articles to be sure that the information is accessible in a variety of formats. And, as we confirm our schedule to launch the condition, we set a routine maintenance schedule of at least once a quarter to thoroughly review and ensure that the information about the condition is current, along with alerts for more rapid updates if new findings are announced.