YouTube announced today that it will certify channels of licensed health professionals such as doctors, nurses or therapists who produce health-related content. Last year, the company introduced a label stating that the channel information comes from a certified healthcare provider. It also showed videos from these approved channels in a new carousel called “From Health Sources” which appears at the top of search results.
While these features were available to select institutions such as educational institutions, public health departments, hospitals, and government agencies at the time of launch, the company is now expanding the program and inviting U.S.-based health creators to apply for it. program.
YouTube follows the guidelines set by the Council of Medical Specialty Societies, the National Academy of Medicine, and the World Health Organization to build a framework around credible sources for health-related content on the platform. All health-related institutions and creators must follow these rules while making YouTube videos.
The streaming platform has established a number of requirements for creators applying for this certification: they should have primarily health content on the channel; must have more than 2,000 hours of public video viewing in the past 12 months; and must certify that they are a licensed physician, nurse or mental health professional.
YouTube will review the channel according to its guidelines and will also check with authorities to verify that applicants have a valid medical license. Once channels are approved, they will receive a special label designating them as a “licensed healthcare professional” resource, and their videos will also appear on healthcare content shelves at the top of related search results. YouTube said this covers search results in most conditions aside from rare diseases (it didn’t specify which ones).
The caveat is that if a creator makes a video that isn’t directly related to health care, the channel still retains the label, and the video may also appear on the health content shelf if the creator uses keywords related to a condition. medical.
In a call with TechCrunch, Dr. Garth Graham, Global Head of YouTube Health, said that the burden of making health-related videos rests with the creator. However, the company doesn’t provide any switches if they want to flag an unrelated video.
Notably, YouTube last month launched a program that highlights the personal stories of patients or their relatives in a separate panel when users search for diseases like cancer and mental health conditions like anxiety and depression. But there is a possibility that a health creator’s personal story may appear in the health resources panel rather than the personal stories panel.
There is also a concern about certified health-related channels spreading disinformation. Dr. Graham insisted that the company uses a combination of processes (AI) and people (reviewers) to measure them against YouTube’s guidelines.
“If a channel that is eligible for these features receives a Community Guidelines warning or content is removed for violating our policies, it will lose its eligibility. Channels can re-apply in 90 days if the communities have been resolved. It’s similar to how our YouTube Partner Program works, which many creators are familiar with, “he said.
The company also reviews these channels annually to make sure they follow YouTube’s rules for health-related content and remove them from the program if necessary.
In addition to the US, YouTube is also opening the application process to healthcare institutions and individuals in Germany. Users in that region will start seeing health certification labels and health content carousel early next year once the first set of channels is approved.