I got a tip that Google vice president Adam Bosworth, who headed up the Google Health project, had left Google. Now Google has provided me with the first confirmation this is so — Bosworth is leaving the company. Says Google:
Adam is a great talent and was instrumental in starting Google Health. He is now on vacation and has decided to pursue other opportunities after that. Marissa Mayer is taking over the health team in the interim until a new team leader takes over. Google is moving forward with work on our health products.
Bosworth joined Google in July 2004, having left BEA Systems. In early 2006, he gained attention as being "architect, Google Health." Despite some high expectations among Google observers, a major Google Health search engine or service didn’t emerge that year. Instead, Google released a general tagging system (Google Coop) that was used to categorize pages related to health care, among other topics.
To date, this system has remained the main way Google has explicitly tried to organize health information for consumers, as Bosworth himself explained on the Google Blog at the end of 2006. Another Bosworth post from last May covered how technology might help with health care, with the idea that two parties could share health information in a trusted and secure manner. From the notes of a speech (PDF format) he mentioned in his post:
It is Google’s vision that these two core capabilities, reliable unambiguous computable medical data and safe systems for trust and authentication and controlled access will dovetail with the consumer needs for discovery about everything in their health arena. As this rolls out and consumers truly can discover what is the state of the art and what they should know about their treatments, where they are being treated, how they are being treated, and how they will mange their diseases or recovery, this consumer awareness will lead to far greater consumer control, far better health data, and inevitably, to a very different health world than the current one.
Last month, screenshots emerged of what might be a Google Health product, a list of forms someone would fill out to keep a medical history record with Google.
Bosworth is still listed on the Google Management page, but I expect he’ll be removed in the near future. That will be the second coming change in as many months for that page, after Google CFO George Reyes resigned last month. Reyes is also still listed at the moment, as he is remaining with the company until a replacement is found, expected by the end of this year.