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HealthCentral.com Launches Interactive Health Care Issues Tool

Armen Hareyan's picture

Health care -- and the candidate who can make affordable, ethical, and quality decisions about it -- is primed for center stage at this year's presidential election.

Knowing the impact health care legislation has on the lives of its community members and all Americans, The HealthCentral Network, Inc. launched HealthCare08, a groundbreaking interactive tool that shows how users' views compare to those of the 2008 presidential candidates. The site also offers information about key health care issues, explaining the controversy behind stem cell research and the nuances of universal health care.

In anticipation of "Super Tuesday," voters interested in health care can get past the rhetoric and find out which candidates are speaking out on the health issues important to them. They may even be surprised to find out that their views align closely to a candidate they hadn't already considered.

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"HealthCentral is about people connecting with each other about their health care needs," said Chris Schroeder, CEO and President of The HealthCentral Network. "The HealthCare08 site is an extension of that -- it helps people see which candidates they connect with on the health care issues most important to them."

Features of the site include animated "PoliGraphs" that plot candidates' platforms on major health care issues and short quizzes that allow users to immediately see how their views match up with candidates' on each issue.

"People may be surprised to find out which candidates' views are closest to their own," said Craig Stoltz, the former Washington Post health editor who led the project. "We've built in a feature that lets them learn more about the issue and revise their answers -- unfortunately for candidates, that's a luxury afforded only to voters."

The site also shows the opinions of HealthCentral.com's renowned expert patients, advocates and clinicians. Site visitors can read these experts' opinions to learn more about each pertinent health issue and how it affects specific conditions, such as diabetes and migraine.

"Too many people with potentially debilitating diseases are not able to get the care they need and deserve," said Teri Robert, migraine expert and writer at MyMigraineConnection.com. "Many have no insurance, and medication prices are a major obstacle to both the uninsured and many of the insured. I am proud to be involved with HealthCentral's HealthCare08 site, as it will provide Americans concerned about health care with the information they need regarding the candidates' positions on vital health issues."