YouTube announces a new team, led by Garth Graham, to bring more authoritative, engaging health content to the platform

Date: Jan 13 2021

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Media Relations 

New collaborators include APHA, Mayo Clinic, the Forum at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Cleveland Clinic, National Academy of Medicine

Today, YouTube is unveiling a new health partnerships team to address the evolving digital health needs of consumers and the desire for clinicians to be able to communicate beyond the exam room. With more than two billion signed-in monthly users, YouTube offers a unique opportunity for clinicians around the world to expand their reach. As part of this ongoing commitment to supporting credible health information, YouTube is working with respected organizations, including the American Public Health Association, Cleveland Clinic, The Forum at the Harvard School of Public Health, Mayo Clinic, Osmosis, Psych Hub, and the National Academy of Medicine, to create high quality health content for viewers around the world. Additionally, the team is partnering with up-and-coming health care creators such as: Natalie Crawford, MD; Ali Mattu, PhD; and Cedric “Jamie” Rutland, MD; to further build their audience on YouTube.

Garth Graham, MD, MPH, Director and Global Head of Healthcare and Public Health Partnerships at YouTube, will oversee these new initiatives. Graham brings deep public health expertise, having served in two US administrations as US Deputy Assistant Secretary of Health, and as Assistant Dean for Health Policy and Chief of Health Services Research at the University of Florida School of Medicine, President of the Aetna Foundation and Chief Community Health Officer at CVS Health. He is a cardiologist and holds both an MD and MPH from Yale.

Graham is part of the wider Google Health clinical team, headed by Karen DeSalvo, MD, MPH. This team provides medical and scientific expertise across Google products and services. Graham’s remit is specifically focused on YouTube.

Today’s announcement is the latest step in YouTube’s efforts to bring quality content from authoritative, evidence-based sources front and center on the platform. With a focus on Credible Information (Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis, Treatment), Guided Practices (Fitness Classes, Physical Therapy Demonstrations), and Emotional Support (Testimonials, Community), the content from YouTube’s health collaborators is seeking to empower patients, while keeping clinicians at the heart of how health is managed.

There is a clear need for more trusted and easy to understand health content online. There is a gap between user expectations, formed by their experiences as users of apps and services that were built for online-first, and the way that the healthcare ecosystem educates and connects with patients. The majority of existing health information online is predominantly text-based and lacks the accessibility, depth and engagement that patients seek.

“When I became a physician, I saw my purpose as helping my patients live their healthiest and best lives. I know first-hand that it means enabling people to take ownership of their health and how it’s managed,” Graham said. “Providing individualized care means meeting people where they are, making complex clinical topics easy-to-understand and fostering a sense of belonging to patients no matter where they are from or what they look like. Video is an equalizer, which is why so many people already turn to YouTube for health support. That’s why we feel a strong responsibility to ensure our platform empowers more people to make healthy changes and find a community centered around evidence-based expert information they can take to their doctors and apply in their daily lives. It is our mission to make public health truly public.”

Additional partnerships will continue to roll out throughout 2021 and beyond, both in the US and globally. Next month, YouTube will bring together a group of leading public health experts for a virtual health event, to focus on increased health education for the public and reaching patients at scale.

Creators will continue to be an important part of YouTube’s health initiatives, given their ability to foster connection with their global audiences in real time. For example, amidst the unfolding pandemic, YouTube creators across the world conducted more than 60 interviews with leading health officials to share helpful COVID-19 information with their audiences. Creator health interviews have received more than 65 million views worldwide, and we look forward to more of these conversations in the year ahead.

Key Quotes:

“The future health of the world’s population is dependent on better understanding of the various scientific efforts and findings,” said Robert Blendon, Richard L. Menschel Professor of Public Health and Professor of Health Policy and Political Analysis, Emeritus, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. “This is an effort to try to disseminate the best of scientific knowledge to as broad a population as has ever been done before.”

“During the most challenging public health crisis of our lifetimes, it has never been more important that people have access to objective, evidence-based information to help them make healthy decisions for themselves, their families, and their communities,” said Victor J. Dzau, MD, president of the National Academy of Medicine. “We are excited to work with YouTube on innovative strategies to ensure that trustworthy scientific information is more broadly accessible, engaging, and actionable.”

“After working more than 40 years in health care and policy, I’ve witnessed the impact online technology has had on the public’s health. The internet and its many online communities have transformed the way people receive information and consume content, especially through video,” said Georges C. Benjamin, MD, executive director of the American Public Health Association. “We’re thrilled to partner with the biggest driver of that video phenomenon — YouTube. The platform itself is an important tool for reaching billions of people at scale and is truly the future of how people receive health information. Our goal is to increase the public’s access to information from sources they can trust.”

"The pandemic has made clear how important it is to provide timely and accurate health information to the general public, ranging from guidelines around physical distancing to content around vaccine safety & efficacy,” said Rishi Desai, MD, MPH, the Chief Medical Officer of Osmosis.org , recent Head of Khan Academy Health, and former CDC Epidemic Intelligence Service Officer. “We created the Osmosis YouTube channel to educate millions of current & future Healthcare Heroes and are excited to be partnering officially with YouTube to continue bringing our reliable & engaging health content to their massive global audience.”

“A person’s health is a key driver determining quality of life,” says Karen DeSalvo, MD, MPH, Google’s Chief Health Officer. “That’s why it is so critically important to equip the public with accurate, credible information about their health and the health of their communities. At Google, access to health information has long been a priority and we’re excited to partner with our YouTube colleagues to further the mission of bringing quality health content to the world and improving people’s lives in the process.”

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The American Public Health Association champions the health of all people and all communities. We are the only organization that combines a nearly 150-year perspective, a broad-based member community and the ability to influence federal policy to improve the public’s health. Learn more at www.apha.org.

About YouTube
Launched in May 2005, YouTube’s mission is to give everyone a voice and show them the world. We believe that everyone deserves to have a voice, and that the world is a better place when we listen, share and build community through our stories. YouTube is a Google company.

About Google Health
Google Health is a team of engineers, clinicians, researchers and other experts applying Google's expertise in AI, product innovation, and hardware to take on big health challenges. We want to help everyone live more life every day with products and services that connect and bring meaning to health information.