Revamped .org Web site set launches

By Kristen Holland Shear

The North Campus hasn’t been the only area of UT Southwestern undergoing a building boom.

For more than a year, Web Services has been working feverishly to overhaul the patient-care Web site at www.utsouthwestern.org.

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The newly revamped site was launched in mid-April and is still being tweaked, said Lorie Robinson, assistant director of product management for Web Services.

“Everything is very consumer-oriented,” Ms. Robinson said. “It’s all about providing consumers with the most relevant information at their fingertips so that they can research a condition, find a physician and request an appointment.”

“We want this to be a one-stop shop for health and medical information,” she said. “Success for us is when someone visits our site and schedules an appointment at UT Southwestern.”

The launch has been a dream of many since the design phase began in February 2008. A steering committee comprising department chairs from throughout the medical center plus hospital and executive leadership spent countless hours fine-tuning every detail so the site would be tailor-made for UT Southwestern’s customer base.

Dr. Bruce Meyer, vice president for medical affairs and chair of the .org steering committee, said the new site will have a dynamic capability similar to the home pages of many large companies.

“This site will have video and will provide information related to clinical trials and clinical research in easily accessible ways to benefit the community,” Dr. Meyer said.

The design will also make it easier to find a physician or information on a specific problem.

“The site has more information than before, and it will be arranged so that our communities can drill down even further to get to the additional data,” Dr. Meyer said. “The new site will also have much more information about our physicians, including video, health quizzes and demonstrations of procedures.”

Ms. Robinson said the site’s amenities include an expanded health library and an interactive map that highlights the clinical buildings and the nearest parking facilities. Turn-by-turn directions from eight points in the region, plus route maps for each of the shuttles that serve UT Southwestern are also available to help visitors navigate the sprawling complex.

“We also are including all the news we distribute through the Office of News and Publication, as well as introducing some Web 2.0 capabilities,” she added.

The site doesn’t yet incorporate any of the popular social networking tools like Facebook or Twitter, but Ms. Robinson said the design provides the flexibility for new features to be added as upcoming revisions are released.

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