AMNews articles linked to Sermo's online physician forum

Doctors can join 30,000 peers to comment on stories and initiate discussions.

Posted Oct. 15, 2007

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Doctors now can share their views on American Medical News articles with thousands of their colleagues on Sermo, an online community for physicians only.

Current and recent articles in the American Medical News online edition -- -- carry links that instantly connect readers to the free Sermo site (link). Established Sermo member physicians then need only log in. First-time physician users can access the Sermo community after a simple registration procedure, taking about two minutes, that includes verification of their MD or DO degree.

Once logged in, physicians not only can post comments on what they have read in AMNews, but they also can initiate discussions on topics of their own choosing, or contribute their views on any of the site's thousands of ongoing dialogues. So far, about 30,000 physicians are Sermo members.

"Incorporating the 'Discuss on Sermo' link within AMNews provides an excellent tool to receive reader feedback and build communities of interest within specific content areas," said AMNews Publisher Robert A. Musacchio, PhD. "I am very excited about this new feature."

The AMNews connection is part of a broader American Medical Association pact with Cambridge, Mass.-based Sermo, signed earlier this year, letting the AMA pose questions and receive feedback from Sermo members. In time, AMA-specific areas are planned within the Sermo site.

Sermo Vice President for Research Initiatives Alex Frost said that by using the article links, physicians can join with their peers in adding an extra dimension to the news. "Coupling Sermo's discussion capabilities with the country's leading source of medical news for physicians stands to change the way medical news is created and interpreted. With this partnership, physicians now can click a single button to see the collective opinion of hundreds or thousands of colleagues, and share their own opinions about current medical news with these same colleagues."

The addition of Sermo links on articles follows another change at the Web site, started in August. Previously, access to the full text of articles was limited to AMA members and paid subscribers. Now, most content is free to view for 90 days from the publication date. Full text of older articles is restricted to AMA members and paid subscribers, as are certain premium services and all content from the newspaper's Business section, including practice management advice. During the 90-day free period, articles have Sermo links (link). Recent articles are also browsable from within the Sermo site.

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