September 1, 2010

Google launches Health Speaks: Online health information in local languages

Google has introduced a new initiative called Health Speaks that aims to help increase the amount of high-quality online health information in local languages. To begin with, the company has launched pilot projects to support community-based, crowd-sourced translation of health information from English into Arabic, Hindi and Swahili.

“Language should not be the barrier that denies millions of people worldwide the opportunity to improve their health with valuable health information,” Jennifer Haroon, manager, health initiatives,, has said. “We encourage anyone with health knowledge who is bilingual in English and either Arabic, Hindi or Swahili to take part in the pilot projects for Health Speaks.”

Google has also decided to provide a donation incentive to encourage community translators to participate. “For the first 60 days, we will donate 3 cents (US) for each English word translated to the Children's Cancer Hospital Egypt 57357, the Public Health Foundation of India and the African Medical and Research Foundation (AMREF) for the pilots in Arabic, Hindi and Swahili, respectively, up to $50,000 each,” Jennifer Haroon has added.


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