Facebook launches Preventive Health tool

Facebook Preventive Health tool

The newly launched Preventive Health tool is Facebook’s way to help users take inhibitory actions against possible health issues.

Currently, Facebook is working with US health organisations to offer users a Preventive Health tool that connects people to health resources and checkup reminders. This will facilitate them to find affordable places to receive care, set reminders to schedule tests and mark when the tests are completed. The media giant believes that changing trends in communication and unequal access to care are a space where new solutions and partnerships can help overcome such global challenges.

Along with India, Facebook has been successful in expanding its blood donation related features in the US, Brazil, Bangladesh, and Pakistan. The platform has made it easier for users to sign up as donors on Facebook and get notified when nearby blood banks are in need. Recently, the Tamil Nadu government has directed all blood banks to use the feature to reach out to possible donors in times of need.

Preventive Health

Two main aspects of the tool are connecting people to health resources and facilitate checkup reminders. In the US, the platform will be concentrating on heart diseases and cancer. This will happen with the help of credible organisations working in these areas contributing resources and expertise to help build the tool and make it effective.

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Users can search for the tool on their mobile app and find out which checkups, such as cholesterol tests or mammograms, are recommended by the partner health organisations based on the age and sex data they provide. Reminders for flu shots will also appear at the appropriate time of the year. The platform hopes to create awareness about preventive care.

Privacy concerns

Facebook says that though Preventive Health will allow users to set reminders and mark them later, the data related to the test results cannot be accessed by the platform or the health organisations they partner with. Personal information will not be shared with third parties like insurance companies, the platform says.

Interestingly, it has also clarified that users will not be shown ads based on the information they provide to the tool. However, if you were to like the Facebook page of a health organisation or visit an external website link from the Preventive Health, it would have an effect on the ads users see.

If a user were to share the tool with friends through messenger or news feed, activity within the tool will not be shared. The users will have control over sharing location with the tool. In order to improve the experience over time, the platform will log more general activity, like frequency of clicks for a specific button in the tool.