A guiding light for Armenia in the internet ocean of health rumors and myths

Med-Practic, defending the public access to high quality medical information

Quality journalism and information provides an essential public service


© 2016 Davo / Jier Mora

The internet, upon its introduction to the general public in the early 1990’s, was hailed as the beginning of a new age of free information. It was revolutionary, and it lead to disruptive innovation in countless industries. EBay and Amazon established themselves as major players in retail, Google invented a new kind of company, and Netflix changed the way that TV shows and movies are watched, made, and evaluated.

But the revolution didn’t hit in all places at once. In some countries, like those in sub-Saharan Africa, connection to the web didn’t really proliferate until the advent of the mobile internet. One of the countries that is really beginning to realize the full potential of the internet is Armenia, the small Eurasian country in the southern Caucasus.

With borders that are mostly closed, Armenia’s most reliable link to the outside world is through the web, and it’s starting to show. Armenians are a tech-savvy people, and much like people in the West, they turn to the internet for answers first. Over 70% of Armenians have access to the web, among the very highest marks in its region, and that number continues to grow.

While access to information is certainly important, quality of information is also essential. In a recent report, the Brookings institution reiterated the importance of explanatory journalism in the education and support of a healthy society. While the internet has proves itself a wonderful channel for disseminating good information, it has also been blamed for the spread of some untrue ideas.

Med-Practic, the top health-information portal in Armenia, understands this very well. Health is one of the most emotional topics one can research, and when it comes to understanding the conditions of yourself or your loved ones, accuracy is incredibly important. With a wealth of high quality information in the country’s native Russian language, Med-Practic serves an incredibly important public good while building a viable business.

© 2016 Davo / Jier Mora

Med-Practic has multiple functions as not only an information portal for regular people, but also a database of research for medical professionals, and a health news website. But Med-Practic is sure to avoid one of the biggest problems of online health-journalism. One of the company’s “basic principles” is to “not to give unproven, controversial information that could harm the health of visitors.”

Many websites rely on sensationalist headlines and articles to attract visitors, but Med-Practic chooses to avoid exaggeration in favor of accuracy, and it does seem to paying off. Among its registered users, Med-Practic counts 4,500 medical practitioners and over 200 hospitals, clinics, and other medical institutions.

Since its founding in 2001, Med-Practic has continuously grown and increased its quality, ensuring itself a place in the digital future of its country. As Armenia’s online presence increases, its importance as a center of tech-culture and ability will only grow as well. Med-Practic seems poised to take the next steps towards international relevance and recognition.

ABOUT BID AND THE CENTURY INTERNATIONAL QUALITY ERA AWARD:


BID is a private and independent organization founded in 1984, whose primary activity is business communication orientated towards quality, excellence and innovation in management. A leader in the broadcasting of Quality Culture, BID recognizes those companies and organizations which lead the most important activities in the business world, and is considered the founding organization in the broadcasting of the Culture of Quality, Excellence and Innovation in 179 countries. The trophy symbolizes a pledge to the principles of Quality Culture. The QC100 Total Quality Management Model, together with the Quality Mix program, media coverage of the convention and its impact on the community and business sector, create an unmatched platform for continuous improvement within the organization and awareness of the achievements of the company at an international level. Awards are given only to those who are committed to improving their Quality Culture based on the principles of the QC100 Total Quality Management Model. Candidates are proposed by the leaders of previously awarded companies who they consider worthy of the award. Especially meritorious candidates may also be nominated. The International BID Quality Award Selection Committee then chooses the winning companies who will receive the award in New York, Paris, Geneva, Frankfurt, Madrid and London.