American Academy of Family Physicians Announces Re-launch of its Award-winning Website, FamilyDoctor.org

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE   
Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Contact:
Janelle Davis
Public Relations Strategist
American Academy of Family Physicians
(800) 274-2237 Ext. 5222
jdavis@aafp.org

LEAWOOD, Kan. — The American Academy of Family Physicians recently launched its redesigned patient education website, FamilyDoctor.org. The award-winning site aims to improve health literacy and patient engagement through a new set of tools and features. The site’s improved layout and navigation make it easier for users to find the information they are looking for — even when using a mobile device. FamilyDoctor.org receives 5 million visits a month, from more than 150,000 unique visitors each day.

Among the new tools and features is a text-to-audio tool called ReadSpeaker that allows visually impaired users and those with limited health literacy to listen to the site’s content in English or Spanish. Rehabilitation exercise animations have also been added to help patients learn how to perform the exercises correctly. In addition, a new feature called “Questions to Ask Your Doctor” accompanies each disease and health condition on the site and prepares users for conversations with their doctor.

FamilyDoctor.org content mirrors the specialty of family medicine, which serves patients from birth to their senior years. Although women are the primary users of FamilyDoctor.org, they use the site to find information for themselves as well as for their young children, teens, and aging parents. Information on the site is organized in user-friendly headings and categories, including disease overview, symptoms, causes, and risk factors. Familydoctor.org also offers health tools, including an online medical dictionary, BMI calculator, immunization schedule, and symptom checker. Additional video content will be added in the coming months to accommodate visitors’ preferred learning styles. Nearly all content on FamilyDoctor.org is available in both English and Spanish.

The Healthcare Management section of the site (formerly the Smart Patient Guide) empowers users to play a more active role in their health care. It includes information about how patients can work with their doctor to receive the best care possible. It also includes resources to help patients gain a better understanding of health insurance and medical bills, tips for finding good health information on the Web, and guidance for navigating end-of-life issues. FamilyDoctor.org also includes a Drug Info section where users can learn more about medication they are prescribed and possible side effects.

“With more than 60 percent of Americans turning to the Web to research their health and wellness concerns, FamilyDoctor.org remains committed to providing accurate information from a family medicine perspective,” said Douglas Henley, MD, executive vice president and CEO of the AAFP. “The new tools on the website will empower patients to become more engaged in their health care and build stronger relationships with their family physicians.”

About FamilyDoctor.org
FamilyDoctor.org is an award-winning website that helps patients stay informed and engaged in their own health care management. It is the only health and wellness website geared toward patients of all ages that is owned and operated by a professional medical association, the American Academy of Family Physicians.

Recommended to patients by AAFP member physicians and their health care teams, FamilyDoctor.org features scientifically accurate information in English and Spanish, including guides for prevention and wellness, prescription and over-the counter drug information, and an interactive health tool that allows users to "search-by-symptom."

FamilyDoctor.org receives 5 million visits a month, from more than 150,000 unique visitors each day. More than 60 percent of Americans search for health information online. For reliable health information, they turn to FamilyDoctor.org.

About the American Academy of Family Physicians
Founded in 1947, the AAFP represents 115,900 physicians and medical students nationwide. It is the only medical society devoted solely to primary care.

Approximately one in four of all office visits are made to family physicians. That is 214 million office visits each year — nearly 74 million more than the next largest medical specialty. Today, family physicians provide more care for America’s underserved and rural populations than any other medical specialty. Family medicine’s cornerstone is an ongoing, personal patient-physician relationship focused on integrated care.

To learn more about the specialty of family medicine, the AAFP's positions on issues and clinical care, and for downloadable multi-media highlighting family medicine, visit aafp.org/media. For information about health care, health conditions and wellness, please visit the AAFP’s award-winning consumer website, familydoctor.org(familydoctor.org)