WebMD picks up Vitals Consumer Services Division, its second acquisition in two months

By Laura Lovett
Share

Photo credit: Vitals.com 

Less than two months since its last acquisition, WebMD, an Internet Brands company, announced that it was picking up the Vitals Consumer Services Division from Mdx Medical.

The division, which is focused on giving consumers online tools to connect to clinicians, is made up of vitals.com and UCompareHealthCare.com. The acquisition will also include the MedHelp tool, which provides a platform for patients to connect to their peers.

“The consumer-first mission of Vitals Consumer Services Division, as evidenced by its strong commitment to transparent information and data, makes it a natural fit within the WebMD network,” Dr. Steve Zatz, WebMD CEO, said in a statement. “We plan to quickly open our combined platform to providers, provider networks, and other health systems that are seeking to drive new patients into their practices.”

In October of 2017, Vitals announced that it was acquiring MedHelp’s online community business for an undisclosed sum. At the time Vitals said it planned to merge its consumer-focused websites with MedHelp’s Patient-to-Patient Communities to form what was then going to be a new digital property, Vital Consumer Services. Vital also received UCompareHealthCare.com through an acquisition back in 2011.

For the last year WebMD has been focused on growing its provider directory, according to the company. This latest acquisition is expected to help the combined platforms generate 10 million visits per month from consumers. 

“We have long operated the Vitals Enterprise and Vitals Consumer businesses separately. We are delighted that Vitals Consumer Services has found a home with WebMD, and we believe those two platforms together will delight consumers who are shopping for a provider,” Heyward Donigan, president and CEO of Vitals, said in a statement. “Our Vitals Enterprise business continues on independently, delivering a leading digital engagement platform for our health plan and employer customers that creates a competitive healthcare marketplace and helps their members choose the best providers.”

WebMD itself was acquired only a year ago by Internet Brands, an integrated media and software services organization which dips into health, automotive, legal, and home/travel. 

But this latest announcement comes on the heels of WebMD’s acquisition of Jobson Healthcare Information, another healthcare content group, for an undisclosed sum. That acquisition was more focused on growing the platform's content, particularly for pharmacists and eye care professionals. 

But its no secret that WebMD is looking to expand. Recently the company announced that it was teaming up with Chinese tech giant Tencent in a deal that would introduce the health information platform to Asia. This means that WebMD’s services will be translated into Chinese and localized to better suit the Chinese population.