Got questions? Need help?
You’ve come to the right place! Get answers to the most frequently asked questions about the inner workings of AnkylosingSpondylitis.net (such as technical help, content, and moderation policies), as well as the organization that powers it all – Health Union! And remember, if you’d like personal assistance, we are just a few clicks away! Who’s this “we”? Why, it’s the community team here at Health Union! We LOVE our communities, and that means we want to help you as much as we possibly can! Feel free to drop us a line after reviewing these topics for your question!
Background information and logistics
What is Health Union?
In 2010, two former pharmaceutical marketing executives left their corporate jobs to establish Health Union, LLC in an effort to truly help people improve their health. Our founders understood the untapped potential to leverage technology in ways that would enable patients to learn, to connect, to share and to be heard in a much bigger way.
Health Union is a fast-paced, forward thinking company. Our goal is to harness the full power of the Internet and emerging technology to inspire people to live better with challenging health conditions. Our unique approach combines new daily, original content with digital, social and mobile technologies to cultivate some of the most active, engaged and fast-growing online communities in migraine, multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, type 2 diabetes, hepatitis C, COPD, Crohn’s disease, asthma, irritable bowel syndrome, plaque psoriasis, psoriatic arthritis, lung cancer, Parkinson’s disease, skin cancer, atopic dermatitis, prostate cancer, bladder cancer and more. Our desire to help people motivates us, and we continuously push ourselves to meet the needs of our ever-growing communities in new and interesting ways. More than a digital publisher, we build real relationships with people and develop deep expertise in the markets we serve. Read more about What We Do.
What websites does Health Union own/operate?
Today, Health Union’s portfolio of patient communities includes Migraine.com, MultipleSclerosis.net, RheumatoidArthritis.net, Type2Diabetes.com, HepatitisC.net, COPD.net, CrohnsDisease.com, Asthma.net, IrritableBowelSyndrome.net, PlaquePsoriasis.com, Psoriatic-Arthritis.com, LungCancer.net, ParkinsonsDisease.net , SkinCancer.net, AtopicDermatitis.net, ProstateCancer.net and BladderCancer.net. We also own URLs and plan future patient communities for AlzheimersDisease.net and Endometriosis.net. Learn more about Our Communities.
How does Health Union make money?
Health Union enables companies to connect, interact and engage with our patient communities through paid relationships for media, market research, and clinical trial services. There are advertisements on our websites, and our site visitors, members or social media followers may receive emails, survey invitations, clinical trial announcements and other program opportunities from sponsors and partners. We strive to be open and honest with our communities regarding any advertising, corporate partnerships and sponsor relationships. We will always clearly disclose these relationships within the context of those communications.
At Health Union, we always approach our partner relationships with a desire to educate partners about real patient experiences and create value or meet the needs of our communities. Our goal is to develop innovative, win-win solutions that benefit both patients and partners, ultimately improving health and healthcare for people living with the conditions we serve.
Does Health Union sell my information? Does Health Union sell my email address?
At Health Union, we take your privacy seriously. Health Union will NEVER share or sell any personally identifiable information (including email addresses) of any community member or individual participant to a sponsor or partner without specific permission to do so.
Health Union does not collect personally identifiable information – such as name, address, birthdate, email address – from any community member or individual participant unless they have voluntarily provided it to us. And, it is not mandatory to provide personally identifiable information to use or visit any Health Union website. Read more about our privacy policies to understand the information we may collect or gather when you use and visit our websites.
Why am I receiving emails from advertisers?
Health Union may periodically send emails directly to our members on behalf of a sponsor or partner. These emails will be clearly marked as “sponsored content” and sent from a dedicated “[email protected]” email address. Please note, we do NOT share email addresses (or any other personally identifiable information) with sponsors; we simply send an email to our members on their behalf, as part of a paid partnership program. We strive to be open and honest with our communities regarding advertising, corporate partnerships and sponsor relationships. We will always clearly disclose these relationships in our communications.
All Health Union emails, including sponsored emails, are fully compliant with anti-SPAM rules, and you may opt-out of receiving emails from us (and our partners) at any time. To stop receiving emails, simply click “unsubscribe” at the bottom of any newsletter or other email from a Health Union website.
I received an invitation to participate in a survey via email. What is it? How will the data be used?
Health Union offers a variety of opportunities to participate in surveys and research opportunities to our community members, including paid market research studies, which seek valuable input from people living with specific conditions.
Invitations to participate in Health Union’s annual In America surveys are extended broadly to all our audiences across our websites and social media pages (not just registered community members). In America surveys are intended to quantify the true impact of these conditions among patients and their loves ones – going beyond basic demographics and symptoms to establish deep understanding of the holistic patient journey for those affected and tracking trends over time. Participation is completely voluntary, and respondents are not compensated for participating in these surveys. All responses to In America surveys become the property of Health Union, LLC; data will only be presented in aggregate (meaning in groups). Top-line results are published on Health Union websites and used to inform the development of new articles throughout the year.
Health Union also may conduct direct market research surveys on behalf of sponsors and offer our community members the opportunity to share their experiences, opinions and feedback with the companies involved in their healthcare. These research surveys are by invitation only (usually sent via email to registered community members) and clearly marked as sponsored. Participation in any market research survey is completely optional, and respondents who qualify are compensated for their time. Please note, individual privacy is very important to us at Health Union, and we never share the identity of any individual participant or community member with sponsors of market research projects.
How did Health Union get my email address?
We take our members’ privacy very seriously. The only way we obtain email addresses is when a person either registers, signs up for a newsletter, or takes a survey and provides their email address. We don’t obtain email addresses from Facebook or any other third party sites.
Content and community
Is Health Union content medically accurate? How often is content updated?
We strive to provide the most accurate and up to date information on all of our websites. All of our published content follows the guidelines of the Health On The Net foundation. Health Union writers utilize the most recent references in each condition and ensure reference information is easily accessible at the bottom of each article. Additionally, we regularly monitor ongoing medical research and drug development and update our websites accordingly.
If you notice any errors or have suggestions for how we could improve our content, please don’t hesitate to let us know at [email protected].
How does Health Union protect the privacy and safety of its community members?
It is our goal to create the best and largest online communities of experts and patients dedicated to specific health conditions. We encourage open conversation within Health Union platforms. We realize that discussions around healthcare can be sensitive and sometimes emotional. It is ok if not everyone agrees on a topic, but we must ensure all conversations are respectful and non-threatening. Each Health Union platform has a terrific group of moderators – patient advocates, Health Union staff, and other experts – who constantly monitor conversations occurring on our Facebook pages, in our forums, and within the comments of specific articles. They respond to questions, offer resources, address concerns and otherwise make sure people feel welcome, appreciated and safe. Our moderators also watch for violations of our Community Rules, which prohibit profanity, medical advice, solicitation of any kind, and the sale of any products (ever). Health Union moderators have discretion to edit or delete posts that do not comply with these discussion rules, and while we understand that everyone can have a bad day, individuals who violate the rules may have their posting privileges revoked without warning.
If you ever have a concern about conversations occurring in one of our communities, please email us at [email protected]. We are here for you!
Does Health Union ever delete or edit comments posted by members?
We encourage open conversation within our platforms – it is our goal to create the best and largest online communities of experts and patients dedicated to specific health conditions. In rare cases, and according to our posted Community Rules, Health Union reserves the right to delete or edit comments when they violate our policies.
Do you have a list of recommended doctors or healthcare institutions? Do you provide crisis counseling? I’m experiencing a new/severe symptom or a reaction to my medication. Can you help?
For your safety, we do not provide personal medical advice via the internet. You are welcome to ask for community feedback on personal experience from other members, as well as our moderators and contributors. However, none of this should take the place of consulting your doctor, nor can it be considered personal medical advice. If you are experiencing new or more severe symptoms, we encourage you to speak with your doctor as soon as possible.
I’m interested in joining Health Union as a patient advocate contributor or moderator. How can I be considered? How do you select contributors for the websites? How do you select moderators?
To be considered as a contributor, please email [email protected] with examples of current work – either with links to published content or with attachments. We select contributors who help us provide a diverse view into living with a particular condition; those who have excellent written communication skills; people who can work as part of a team; and of course, whether or not we are looking to expand our network of contributors at that time plays a role in the selection process.
Regarding selection of moderators, we choose people who are knowledgeable in a particular condition, either based on extensive personal experience or professional training. Note that we do not provide personal medical advice for individual community members and always recommend consulting with healthcare professional. Interested? Send an email to [email protected].
I found an error on one of your websites. Who do I contact?
Well, that is somewhat embarrassing, isn’t it! Thank you for your input and letting us know. Please email us with a screenshot and/or link to the page where an error occurred at [email protected]. We will get it fixed as soon as possible!
Why should I register on a Health Union website? How do I sign-up?
Registering on a Health Union website allows you to participate on the sites in ways that our community members often find enriching. For example, as a registered member, you can comment on articles, share your story on our Stories pages, submit questions or comments in the discussion forums, start your own thread in the discussion forums, and more. In addition, with your membership to any Health Union website you’ll receive:
- The weekly e-Newsletter: All the latest articles published from the website, right in your inbox, once each week.
- Surveys and research opportunities: Learn about opportunities to participate in condition-related research, including paid market research studies which seek valuable input from people living with specific conditions.
- TrialLink notifications: Learn about and register for cutting edge clinical trials performed by organizations conducting research on new treatments for specific conditions.
Registering for one of our websites is easy. Click “Register” at the top of the page (below the website logo and menu) or one of the widgets in the right-side column. Simply provide your email address to receive the full benefits of AnkylosingSpondylitis.net membership, including the latest news, research and clinical trials opportunities. You’ll receive an email to set a password and activate your account – then you’re all set!
Trouble creating an account or using an existing account?
Sorry to learn you may be having trouble! If you’re using an existing account, please make sure you are using the correct user name and password (the email address you signed up with can also be used as your user name). If you forgot your password, there will be a “Lost your password?” link in the error message that displays when you enter an incorrect password – you can provide the email address you used to sign up and we’ll send you a link to change your password via email. If you’re having trouble registering for the first time or just want some personal assistance, please send an email to [email protected]. We are happy to help!
Password help – Forgot a password or need to change it?
To change your password, please log in and visit your profile by clicking on “Profile”. From there, you can change your password under the “Settings” tab, then select “General.” If you forgot your password and you are already logged in, you can change your password using the aforementioned steps. If you forgot your password and are not logged in, there will be a “Lost your password?” link in the error message that displays when you enter an incorrect password – you can provide the email address you used to sign up, and we’ll send you a link to change your password via email. If you’re still having trouble or just want some personal assistance, please send an email to [email protected].
Email help – Need to change your email address, update your communication preferences or unsubscribe?
To change your email address, log in and visit your profile by clicking on “Profile”. (When you’re logged in, you should see a welcome message just below the site logo and menu options. “Profile” is right next to it.) From there you can change your email address under the “Settings” tab, then select “General.” Update your email address and be sure to hit the “Save Changes” button when you’re done.
To update your communication preferences – meaning how and when you receive emails from the website – click on “Email” in the “Settings” tab of your profile. Don’t forget to hit the “Save Changes” button when you’re done.
To unsubscribe from the newsletter or other email communication from a Health Union website, simply click “unsubscribe” at the bottom of any newsletter.
Didn’t find what you were looking for? Send us a message at [email protected]! We are happy to help!