Health Care 3.0

Health Care Trends With a Social Media Twist


This is a great article that explores the many ways that patients can use social media in a wide range of ways – symptom research, physician location, support. It also touches on sites that help to pair patients with clinical trials they might not have found otherwise. Long gone are the days of a simple WebMD search to find out what that lingering headache may be.


Social media is no longer just a means to gain health information, but a viable way to find treatments, treatment centers or even just a caring ear to listen to your struggles. On the flip side, the issue of privacy yet again raises its ugly head as patients who are more open about themselves and their conditions open themselves up for violations.


What is important to remember is that with the set backs, there are so many gains. Patients now have more resources to empower them about their conditions. Like the author of this piece, I agree that the power of social media will continue to make advancements, even in light of small set backs.

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Comment by Dana Gulick on May 6, 2011 at 3:13pm
Thanks for flagging, Shannon! What got me was one nagging little line at the end of the piece that I wouldn't have thought much of until I saw a similar post from Kevin M.D.: physicians having to combat negative web perceptions as a result of patient rating sites.  Interesting read: Sounds like the law of averages (and coercing more patients to post) can improve the situation!
Comment by Tanya Holloway on May 4, 2011 at 12:09pm
I really enjoyed reading this article Shannon, particularly the social media examples of Army of Women and physicians braving Facebook to communicate with and help patients. I think we are all guilty of self medicating via the web but with so much information out there it can be hard to differentiate what information is right, let alone small differences in your own symptoms! I agree with the prediction of this piece that there is now the 'opportunity for health care providers to recommend reliable websites, as well as social media sites, that might benefit the information seeker'.

A community discussing and debating current health care trends, often those involving social media.


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