HealthiNation, US News Launch Video Series

HealthiNation has launched a new on-demand video series in conjunction with the July 21 release of US News & World Report’s annual “America’s Best Hospitals” issue.
 
The Manhattan-based content producer this week rolled out 10 new videos offering a behind-the-scenes look at the making of the US News package, which ranks the nation’s premiere hospitals in 16 discrete specialties, including: kidney disorders, cancer, heart surgery and orthopedics.
 
Each of the co-branded videos, which are posted online at USNews.com and HealthiNation.com, run around four minutes in length and provide users with a clear-eyed view of the magazine’s selection process.
 
“Our chief medical editor, Dr. Holly Atkinson, sits down with the editors of US News & World Report in order to get a better sense of how they choose the best hospitals––what the methodology is, what the criteria for selection is,” said HealthiNation CEO Raj Amin. “It’s insightful for consumers, but it’s meant to be informative for other health care providers as well.”
 
Beyond providing a peek at the editorial process, the videos are designed to provide consumers with a sort of contextual baseline, offering information that can help people make smarter decisions about their own hospital choices.
 
“A lot of what the initiative speaks to is, what are the questions patients can ask to empower themselves,” Amin said. “If you can get a consumer to start asking their doctor the right questions about their treatment options, then they can make much more informed judgments on where to turn for specialized health care.”

The partnership is heralded in a full-page ad in the July 21 issue of the newsweekly.
 
This year marks the magazine’s 20th Best Hospitals roundup. A total of 4,861 hospitals were put under the microscope, of which a mere 174 (4 percent) scored high enough to be ranked in one of the 16 specialties. Of those, just 21 qualified for the US News Honor Roll, which lists the hospitals that ranked at the top in at least six of the core specialties.
 
The top-ranked hospital in the land: Baltimore’s Johns Hopkins. In making their assessments, US News editors factored in variables like technology, reputation and patient mortality rates.
 
The Best Hospitals edition is one US News’ top-selling issues of the year, behind the annual college rankings.
 
Amin said the ad-supported HealthiNation has seen an influx of pharma dollars, as advertisers in the category continue to shift money from television to online and other digital platforms. Last year, pharmaceutical companies boosted their measured online spend 36 percent to $137 million, per TNS Media Intelligence, while at the same time their overall marketing investments were scaled back by 10.6 percent to $4.7 billion. Pharma TV spend dropped 4.3 percent to $2.9 billion in 2008.
 
“Our key selling point is the efficiency of promotion, how good are we as an industry in driving action,” Amin said. “One of the great things about the on-demand environment is that the consumer has actively searched out the content, and so they’re more likely to be invested in that content. It’s a transactional medium, and consumers are ready to take action. Another benefit is there’s no clutter issue.”
 
Now in its fifth year of operation, HealthiNation has increased its ad revenues by 400 percent on a year-to-year basis. Along with US News, the company’s distribution partners include online portals like Yahoo and Answers.com, Parade magazine’s Parade.com and a number of major cable operators (Comcast, Charter, Cox Communications). HealthiNation video content is now accessible in some 25 million cable households.
 
Last September, HealthiNation raised $7.5 million in Series B funding, led by Intel Capital. Previous investor MK Capital also invested in the round.