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YouTube, KFF Promote Health Equity Through Patient Education

The health equity program will help organizations create a series of patient education videos to address health equity in mental health, maternal health, and the healthcare sector.

In partnership with the Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF), YouTube has launched The-IQ – tackling health equity through Information Quality, a patient education video series scaling communication messages around health equity.

This initiative comes as an effort to explore the lack of health information and patient education as a determinant of health.

“For many years, doctors, nurses, and public health professionals have studied a wide range of non-medical factors that can impact people’s health,” Garth Graham, MD, director, and head of Youtube Health, wrote in a blog post announcing the program. “These are called social determinants of health, and they can include a variety of factors like access to housing, food security, education, and income.”

“But there’s another area that we also want to focus on: information as a determinant of health,” Graham continued. “Equitable access to high-quality information allows folks to make smart decisions about their own health — and it’s something we want to provide outside of the limited opportunities physicians have with people in the exam room.”

Under THE-IQ, KFF and YouTube will collaborate with The Loveland Foundation, National Birth Equity Collaborative (NBEC), and Satcher Health Leadership Institute letting their perspectives be heard on one of the most widely used social media platforms—YouTube.

Assisted by KFF, the three organizations that serve underrepresented groups will conceptualize and produce video series that examine health equity through the respective focus areas of mental health, maternal health, and healthcare access.

The Loveland Foundation will create a video series focused on mental health access for Black women and girls. Satcher Health Leadership Institute will use the platform to bring light to the root causes or upstream determinants and fundamental drivers of health inequities, including data challenges and opportunities. Lastly, NBEC’s aim is tied to improving the health outcomes of Black birthing people.

Production will take place this month with videos planned for release in November, the press release stated.

KFF’s Social Impact team is set to lead the creative strategy, content development, and media placement of the series in an effort to provide accessible facts and dispel misinformation about important health issues facing underserved communities.

By leveraging video as a medium to scale health communication messages, KFF intends to offer hands-on production coordination for the participating organizations. Additionally, KFF will provide access to in-house experts across policy analysis, polling, and social impact media campaigns, the press release stated.

The IQ is the most recent effort by YouTube to push patient education through video streaming. In 2021, YouTube and Mass General Brigham partnered to increase patient access to credible medical information and debunk medical misinformation.

Because authoritative and credible information has become harder to find, the video series aimed to give patients entertaining, evidence-based videos about mRNA research, mental health, and heart health.

“In our increasingly digital world, the next phase in health communication is video, where health care professionals can connect with patients and answer their questions in a way that is both visual and personal,” said Graham. “YouTube, which has more than 2 billion monthly active users, has the potential to be a transformative tool for public health and can positively impact communities at scale.”

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