When social networking makes a difference
By Nicola Freeman
Facebook with its 500 million members grabs all the headlines when it
comes to social networking, there are thousands of other social networks
out there – everything from Facebook rival MySpace to hobby sites with a
couple of dozen members.
Although some people view social
networking as the perfect way to waste time, I recently came across a
network that is making a big difference for a lot of people. It’s called
CarePages and it was created “to share the challenges, hopes and triumphs of anyone facing a life-threatening health event.”
has been around since 2002 but has recently experienced rapid growth as
people have become more familiar with social networking and sharing
information online. There are now over a million unique visitors each
month to thousands of individual and private-label CarePages web sites.
service is free, although users are required to register first. Each
web site in the CarePages network is created by the individual facing
the life-threatening event or by a loved one. The web site displays
updates on the patient’s condition and is used to build a community of
support. Additional postings can include photos, more general healthcare
information, and a message board for visitors to leave supportive
As well as individual pages, CarePages web sites are
offered by over 625 U.S. and Canadian healthcare facilities. Web sites
can be as public or as private as each member wants. Some are
password-protected to ensure strict privacy; others are open to all in
the hope that people with similar conditions can find solace or
CarePages makes a point of providing numerous links
to additional healthcare information, so patients and loved ones can
find out more about their life-threatening condition. There are lively
discussion boards and dozens of tips for the sick and those offering
support – everything from “Managing money in a medical crisis” to “27 ways to comfort a sick friend”.
CarePages has one simple mission: to ensure that no-one faces a health challenge alone.
Comment by tracy, posted 9/24/2010, 1:24 PM:
CP has been a huge benefit to my familie's sanity over the past 3 years that DD has had a CP. THANK GOD FOR CAREPAGES!