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Expansion of The Merck Manual Product Line Powered by Unbound Medicine

Writing, Editing, and Distribution Accomplished with End-to-End Digital Publishing Platform

Charlottesville, VA, November 20, 2008—Unbound Medicine, a leader in knowledge management solutions for healthcare, today announced the release of new “digitally born” products developed in partnership with Merck & Co., Inc. The new products extend The Merck Manual franchise with a new database focused on the assessment and treatment of patient symptoms. All phases of the project—from content design and writing through simultaneous release in multiple products and media—were powered by the Unbound™ Platform.

Because patients frequently present with symptoms rather than known conditions, the Merck Publishing Group determined that a concise, highly organized, and practical guide to patient symptoms would be useful to practicing physicians and trainees. Merck then chose the Unbound Platform and its editorial module, uPub™, to author and edit the new Merck Manual of Patient Symptoms because it supports web-based authoring, version tracking, and online management for geographically distributed author networks.

After editorial development was completed, the Unbound Platform was used to simultaneously output the content from uPub’s XML repository for print composition and digital distribution, and to create integrated product bundles that link the new patient symptom data together with the classic Merck Manual. Using these product bundles on the Unbound Platform, end users can now access the integrated content using all major technologies of the day—iPhone, BlackBerry, Windows Mobile, Palm, or the web.

A comprehensive website, The Merck Manual for Web and Mobile, serves as the online destination for all subscribers and customers looking for Unbound products in the Merck Manual family. In addition to The Merck Manual, the site features the two new integrated product bundles:

  • The Merck Manual with Patient Symptoms Guide facilitates quick review of etiology, evaluation, and immediate treatment of presenting symptoms then links directly to the details of specific diseases.
  • The Merck Manual Suite + Davis’s Drug Guide adds a comprehensive drug guide to the symptom and disease management resources described above for a complete point-of-care solution.

“We chose Unbound’s web-based system, uPub, to create, edit, maintain, and deliver The Merck Manual of Patient Symptoms digitally, both for the print book and the electronic products,” explained Robert S. Porter, MD, editor of The Merck Manual and The Merck Manual of Patient Symptoms. “Unbound customized the system to reflect both the organizational structure we designed for our content and the workflow we needed. Members of our team found writing and editing in uPub to be straightforward and intuitive.”

The Merck Manual of Patient Symptoms is the perfect addition to the comprehensive diagnosis and management information provided by The Merck Manual,” said Bill Detmer, MD, president of Unbound Medicine. “It provides an entry point where physicians or trainees can quickly confirm the most likely diagnoses, then navigate via web or mobile to more detailed information to answer clinical questions that arise at the point of care.”

For free trials of web and mobile or to learn more about the Merck Manual products offered by Unbound Medicine, visit www.unboundmedicine.com/merckmanual.

About Unbound Medicine
Unbound Medicine, Inc. (www.unboundmedicine.com) develops next-generation knowledge management systems for healthcare. The company’s handheld, wireless, and web-based technology platform and its information architecture services provide healthcare professionals with advanced systems for acquiring, managing, and sharing knowledge.

About Merck
Merck & Co., Inc. (www.merck.com) is a global research-driven pharmaceutical company dedicated to putting patients first. Established in 1891, Merck currently discovers, develops, manufactures, and markets vaccines and medicines to address unmet medical needs. The Company devotes extensive efforts to increase access to medicines through far-reaching programs that not only donate Merck medicines but help deliver them to the people who need them. Merck also publishes unbiased health information as a not-for-profit service.


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