Twitter

By Jonah Comstock October 17, 2017
Google briefly tested, but has either removed or planned to remove, a feature in Google Maps that automatically added calorie counts to walking routes, and even expressed the number of calories as an equivalent number of "mini-cupcakes." The feature was rolled out on a test basis to some iOS users, but was rapidly panned on Twitter. In addition to a general feeling that the app was shaming or...
By Heather Mack June 21, 2017
Headspace, maker of the eponymous meditation and mental well-being app, has hired Ross Hoffman as the company’s chief business officer. Hoffman joins Headspace after six years at Twitter, where he most recently held the post of SVP of global partnerships. The appointment comes at a time of change for Headspace, which recently laid off 13 staff positions in the marketing department but also...
By Heather Mack February 28, 2017
The power of social media for spreading information, creating community and growing business is undeniable, and it has also proven to be a valuable tool in healthcare in instances like sharing resources between research organizations, taking a pulse on consumers’ experiences with a new device, or recruiting participants for a clinical trial. But how do healthcare practitioners approach the...
By Heather Mack February 22, 2017
Digital diabetes management company Omada Health has brought on federal policy veteran Lucia Savage as their new Chief Privacy and Regulatory Officer. Savage, who previously worked as Chief Privacy Officer at the Office of the National Coordinator for IT, will lead Omada’s legal and compliance team. In her new role, Savage will lead Omada’s regulatory strategy and ensure the privacy and security...
By Jonah Comstock November 14, 2016
It's been two years since the FDA passed its social media guidance for pharmaceutical advertising in limited-character formats -- that is, primarily, Twitter and Google sponsored links. Among other things, that guidance stipulated that, if a company wants to tweet about the benefit of a drug, they must include the "most serious risks" of that drug in the same tweet and that tweets must contain...
By Aditi Pai January 20, 2016
Former Twitter CEO Dick Costolo announced on Twitter yesterday -- by posting screen shots from his Apple Notes app -- that he is planning to launch a digital health company focused on fitness. He also announced he would be working as a venture partner at Index Ventures. In the note, Costolo said he is working with Bryan Oki, currently the cofounder and CEO of Fitify, a health consulting firm that...
By Jonah Comstock October 5, 2015
MedWatcher, from Epidemico. We've written before about Epidemico, a startup that grew out of the Boston Children's Hospital's work on combing social media for medical and health data. Today at the Health 2.0 conference in Santa Clara, California, Greg Powell, director of pharmacovigilance at GlaxoSmithKline, talked about how the pharma company uses the data it collects from its partnership...
By Aditi Pai October 20, 2014
Chicago's Department of Public Health (CDPH) has conducted more than 150 restaurant and food service inspections in the past year that may not have otherwise happened as a result of its new program, called Foodborne Chicago, which uses Twitter to search for people who tweeted about getting food poisoning. Of the food service inspections conducted, an article published this month in the Journal of...
By Jonah Comstock June 18, 2014
The FDA has, at long last, released draft guidance for how pharmaceutical companies should behave on limited-character social media platforms like Twitter and when correcting misinformation on third-party sites. The FDA carefully controls labeling, advertisement, and promotion for drugs and devices requiring FDA clearance. It makes sure that companies never list the benefits of a drug without...
By Jonah Comstock April 30, 2014
A team of researchers has found that, for 23 commonly used drugs, well over three times as many adverse drug reactions were reported on Twitter in a given time period than were reported to the FDA. Of course, the study also notes that the tweeted reports, referred to as "Proto AEs" (adverse events) weren't necessarily as specific or useful as FDA adverse event reports. Over a six-month period,...