SOURCE: MedRespond


April 26, 2012 10:18 ET

MedRespond Named "Honors Laureate" by Computerworld Magazine

Provider of Interactive Online Video Health Programs Lauded for Training of Med Students to Discuss Drug & Alcohol Abuse

PITTSBURGH, PA--(Marketwire - Apr 26, 2012) - MedRespond (, a Web-based provider of interactive health education and patient support video content, said today that it was named an Honors Laureate by Computerworld Magazine for its online training of medical students to better engage patients in recognizing their drug and alcohol abuse.

MedRespond's substance abuse intervention program, titled Effective Brief Intervention®, is based on an internationally recognized curriculum developed at the University of Pittsburgh School of Pharmacy's Program Evaluation and Research Unit. MedRespond's online program is now being used by medical schools and teaching hospitals across Pennsylvania, including the Einstein Medical Center (Philadelphia) and UPMC hospital sites (Western Pennsylvania). MedRespond said it expects to customize the program for other schools and hospitals worldwide.

The Effective Brief Intervention program employs the patented Synthetic Interviews® technology, first created at Carnegie Mellon University, that combines artificial intelligence, streaming video and machine learning to simulate a real-time, one-on-one conversation.

The interactive program guides medical students through a simulated one-on-one interview with a patient named 'Pat,' replicating a conversation between doctor and patient in a clinical setting. When a student conducts the interview using proper brief intervention techniques, Pat cooperates and moves the conversation toward the goal of patient awareness of unhealthy drug or alcohol use. If the med student fails to pursue the conversation correctly, Pat gets defensive, then angry and may even storm out of the doctor's office.

Computerworld Magazine said its Honors Laureate award in its Emerging Technology category "recognizes organizations for the bold and innovative creation or use of leading-edge and largely unproven technology to advance programs and services that benefit humanity."

Said Virginia Pribanic, MedRespond founder and CEO, "We are thrilled to be given this prestigious designation by Computerworld. Our ability to leverage our knowledge of healthcare challenges and the Synthetic Interview technology enables us to offer highly focused and effective communications programming for a range of healthcare organizations, including pharmaceutical companies, healthcare providers, transition care teams, nonprofit disease associations, continuing medical education specialists, government health authorities and others.

"This honor from Computerworld is recognition that we are building an interactive medical education prowess -- a vivid and bold new approach to healthcare education -- that will make a real difference in peoples' lives," added Pribanic. "This is an important milestone for our company."

In addition to its work with the University of Pittsburgh, MedRespond has also developed interactive online programming for numerous other organizations, including Bristol-Myers Squibb and the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill.


Founded in 2000, MedRespond is a health information technology company whose goal is to advance education and communications in healthcare in a way that improves outcomes, reduces suffering and supports patients at each stage of their lives. The company is the exclusive healthcare industry license holder for an interactive search technology first developed at Carnegie Mellon University known as "Synthetic Interviews" that integrates artificial intelligence, streaming media and computational linguistics to simulate one-on-one conversations online. MedRespond is commissioned by healthcare organizations to produce and maintain online interactive video programming. To reach MedRespond, e-mail or call 412-488-7000

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