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Moms who blog: the underrated changemakers in health

Women are the more active gender on online social networks. We’re also the healthcare decisionmakers in most families, too. Taken together, these two facts help explain why women–moms in particular–often are responsible for using the web to bring powerful stories from the grassroots level to the world, effecting real change in healthcare at a time when women’s health is being used as a political football.

To learn more about the topic I spoke with Deb Levine, a pioneer when it comes to using the web as a tool for social change related to health information access and technology. She founded the award-winning online sexual health Q&A site Go Ask Alice, and recently won an award from the White House for her team’s design of an app used to help prevent dating violence at colleges and universities.

Levine, a mother of two, observed that being a mom “informs all of [her] work and writing” and is “an overarching influence” on her.

“Women who are mothers are writing about sensitive issues,” she continued. “[They] are the people who, in bringing health issues to the forefront, are pushing healthcare reform and access while also bringing attention to important issues like maternal mortality.”

Perhaps the idea of what “mommy bloggers” can do for the world should be rethought. After all, moms are the ones who have the insight, the blogs and the networks to bring stories about sensitive health issues to the world. If the slew of moms ...