Health Care Trends With a Social Media Twist
A recent poll by Capstrat and Public Policy Polling showed that while Americans are comfortable and apt to use the Internet for access to PHRs, medical billing and medical appointments, they are reluctant to use social media to communicate with their MDs. 85% of respondents said they prefer a traditional means of communication with their doctors, and wouldn't use social media platforms even if the physician offered such services.
I am certainly using various platforms to access lab results and schedule appointments with my doctors, but I do agree with the majority of the respondents in that I would prefer a traditional style of communication with my doctors, either in-person visits or via phone. Perhaps it's simply an old-school mindset, but I feel that the physician-patient "code of conduct" warrants more "official" communication between the two parties. Plus, if physicians start engaging with instant messaging and the like with their patients, how does that even fit into an already-packed day? Might they find themselves saddled with more malpractice lawsuits if they are dispensing advice on an ad-hoc basis, without giving each patient and situation the careful consideration and personal attention it deserves?