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Welcome to .health – the home for health online

1,877.

One thousand eight hundred and seventy-seven days.

That’s how long ago we officially committed to changing the way health information is found online. May 30, 2012 was the day we submitted our application to operate the .heath top level domain (TLD) to ICANN, the global organization responsible for overseeing the Internet addressing system.

To me, this was a no brainer. There are so many things that are broken about health information online. The depth of this is huge. Healthcare – a narrow definition of health that doesn’t even include many aspects of prevention and wellness – represents upwards of 17% of US GDP. Today, interacting with health online is the third most common activity on the internet.

Universities have .edu, non-profit organizations have .org — and as of 11am Eastern today,  the health industry will have .health – the home for health online.

 

890.

Eight hundred and ninety days.

That’s how long ago we signed our contract with ICANN and earned the right to launch .health to the public. That’s more than two years that we spent learning as much as possible about the health industry, building the team, making friends and developing the policies and procedures necessary to make this successful. We’ve designed .health for brands, organizations and individuals providing high quality health products, information and services. Doing it right took some time and we needed help.

Fortunately for us, the health industry is full of brilliant and inspiring leaders, many of which are open and excited to lend a hand (see the #pinksocks tribe as an example). Now that we’re open for business to the industry, I’m excited to tell you about our .health Policy and Advisory Board. These are the folks that I count on to both inspire and teach me so much. Health deals with big issues, serious stuff that greatly affects people’s lives on a daily basis. Because of this, when I went about building the advisory board, I knew there were certain areas where I needed reinforcements – internet security, public health policy and communications, monitoring for rogue pharma, medicine and the future of health. I’ll put my team up against yours in a 5 on 5 any day of the week.

You can see full bios here, but here’s a quick overview. Nobody knows the ins and outs of operating a registry business like Nicolai Bezsonoff, one of my co-founders @ .CO. He now runs the internet security solutions business for Neustar. Dori Salcido is a former Assistant Secretary for Public Affairs at US Dept. of Health and Human Services in the thick of the Affordable Care Act under President Obama. To put it mildly, she knows healthcare communications. John Horton is the guru when it comes to monitoring healthcare websites for abuse, specifically online pharmacies and telemedicine.  Daniel Kraft, MD is the evangelist of the future of health. I first met Daniel in 2015 when I learned more than I ever thought I would about precision medicine, digital health and other futuristic things at his event, Exponential Medicine. Mind blown. And lastly, Dr. John Brownstein is the Chief Innovation Officer at Boston Children’s Hospital, a serial entrepreneur and an advisor to a few companies you may have heard of. Like I said before, there are a lot of challenges to creating an industry standard for health information online. I needed the big guns.


Day zero.

There’s a lot to do and we’re just getting started. Two weeks ago we wrapped up our first phase of launch (Sunrise) where trademark holders had their opportunity to register their trademarked names. We saw the big health players come out and claim their trademarks as .health domain names, such as Mayo Clinic, United Healthcare, J&J, Oscar and Duke Health to name a few. In addition, the new and future health players were not left behind – amongst them, Apple, Amazon, Facebook and Google.

The last few weeks in the late nights and early mornings, as the team hustles to get us to our launch at 11am EDT today, I keep hearing, “it’s happening.”  It’s happening. We‘re doing it. We are truly building a focused, credible and meaningful space. Thanks to all our early adopters, we’re on our way. And those are only the ones we’re allowed to talk about. Stay tuned for much much more.

Undoubtedly, any time I talk to anyone outside of the domain industry about building .health, the first question is almost always, how the hell do you end up owning an entire piece of the internet like that? That story, as well as all the others over the last 10+ years in the domain industry, is best accompanied with a nice single malt. Come down to Miami to see us, first drink is on me.

 

Here’s to your .health!
José Ignacio Rasco, CEO dotHealth

 

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