TV4 Entertainment has created a new subsidiary – Digital Health Networks – that will operate a portfolio of global streaming channels and an original content studio dedicated to mental and physical health and wellness. The first channel out of the box – Thrive Cancer Network – is headed by former Starz Entertainment chief marketing officer Mike Hale and will launch in the fall.
Digital Health Networks (DHN) will offer inspirational content, real stories and personal community connections, while providing educational resources for individual conditions. DHN will work with category-specific experts to aggregate, produce and curate authentic video content into easy-to-find channel brands.
Thrive Cancer Network has a video library of more than 1,000 hours of content designed to inform, inspire and entertain global citizens impacted by cancer. DHN plans to add other channels devoted to nutrition, stress management, chronic pain, autism, fitness, addiction, diabetes and caregivers over the next year.
All channels will launch globally as free services, with premium member content tiers.
“Finding quality video to maximize individual well-being is overwhelming,” said TV4 Entertainment founder and CEO Jon Cody in a statement. “Disease brings with it chaos. We created Digital Health Networks to offer better choices that help patients, caregivers and survivors cut through the clutter and bring clarity in chaos.”
DHN channels will be offered directly to viewers through websites and apps, and distributed to television, streaming and mobile platforms, as well as point-of-care domains including physician offices, hospitals and telemedicine screens.
Hale will also serve as DHN’s managing director and entertainment industry veteran and cancer survivor turned patient advocate, Jonathan Sommers, will oversee DHN’s originals studio. Sommers also serves on SWOG’s Digital Engagement Committee, an international cancer clinical trials network supported by the National Cancer Institute.
“Health, wellness, and disease touch everyone; each of us has a story. Digital Health Networks combines the tradecraft of storytelling with the power of personal experience. Who better to inspire, give advice, and discuss lifestyle options than someone who has been there?” Hale said in a statement. “We look forward to providing a new media platform for authentic storytelling that can positively impact the lives of hundreds of millions of people.”
Advisors to DHN include Jeffrey Erb (President of Healix at IPG Mediabrands), Gary Hutchinson (Entrepreneur in Residence at Alfred E. Mann Institute for Biomedical Engineering at the University of Southern California) and Dr. Ron Pion (healthcare telecommunications pioneer and entrepreneur), all combining to bring decades of healthcare experience to the venture.