Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Doctor Diagnosis: The End to Misleading Medical Myths

It is important for Healthcare Professional to use social media to help your patients find a credible, trusted voice amongst a sea of misleading medical myths.

As a graduate student of Integrated Marketing Communication at Northwestern University with a passion for social media strategy and top-notch content creation. I have recently reviewed the topic of social and Healthcare, and have found two articles that will help you begin your social presence as a credible, trusted source of Healthcare information.

The common platforms: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+, are wrought with health-related conversations. Sign up for an account, create a profile and start listening to the conversations. You should also familiarize yourself with the new social networks specifically made for Healthcare pros. Alison Diana of Business and Technology website, Informationweek.com suggests several new sites to consider in her article, Healthcare Social Networks: Sermo, Doximity, PatientsLikeMe, ConnectedLiving, OrthoMind, CureDiva, Wego Health Network, AllNurses, DoctorsHangout.com, Ozmosis.org, Therapy Networking, and Quantia MD. These platforms offered a tailored, targeted approach to building your social status. They are changing the sphere of social networking for Healthcare professionals because they respect the privacy of you, your professional network and your patients. They help you find targeted networks specific to your field. They serve as resources of health-related trends and topics to discuss on your Blog, Twitter, Facebook, or other social profiles. Engaging on these sites will ensure you remain relevant, credible and a leader in your profession. Remember, you don’t have to join them all; pick the ones that are most relevant to you and your profession.

Dr. Kevin Campbell, an Internationally respected Cardiologist, highlights the dos and don’ts of social media use for Doctors, in his article Social Media for Docs: Truths and Consequences. These points clearly outline the best practices for Healthcare professionals in the social space. Pay particular attention to the points TEACH and CONSULT. As a Doctor you have the rare opportunity to provide timely and credible educational opportunities. This is your chance to open up and share medical information that will have an impact on your patient’s and potential patient’s health. Don’t use your medical dictionary! You must communicate to your audience in terms they will understand. Becoming the go-to source for credible, trustworthy information about health-related topics will only further the positive reputation of your service. 
  • Treat: Do not engage in a doctor-patient relationship.
  • Teach: Provide timely and credible education.
  • Consult: Share medical information and knowledge (he referenced his discussions on the Riata lead recall).
  • Market: Tell people what makes you special.
  • Become an expert or KOL (key opinion leader): Establish a national/international expert status to enhance your reputation.
After reviewing these articles and my other research at Northwestern, here are three action items you should follow the next time you log onto the web:

1. Be a Socialite: Get on the platforms where your professional network and patients are flocking. Don’t limit yourself to the common social networking sites, step outside the box and try some of the networks listed above.

2. Be a Listener: What is your community talking about? Create and share content that speaks to these conversations. Invite other trusted colleagues to join in the conversation and share their own opinions on the subject.

3. Be a Leader (and a Follower): Tune into health-related topics that have social media users buzzing. Is it cold season? Are people talking about detoxing? Nutrition? Is it Breast Cancer Awareness Month? Set up searches, lists, and Google Alerts on these various topics and lead the conversation on these topics.

In order to put an end to the misinformed health myths spiraling around the Internet it is crucial for Healthcare Practitioners to embrace the digital and social domain. By following my three tips: Be a Socialite, Be a Listener, and Be a Leader (And a Follower), you will encourage the spread of credible, trustworthy information and help the world become healthier one tweet at a time!


Professional Summary: Kiersten Corradetti is currently pursuing a Masters degree in Integrated Marketing at Medill, Northwestern University. She has worked in social media and online content strategy in the Health and Fitness Industry for four years. She has a passion for building brand communities.  Questions or Comments?  Ask me on Twitter @kierstenalex

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for sharing this informative post. Today, the healthcare and pharmaceutical industries are growing and introducing many drugs and equipment as per the need of the patient condition. As it is very essential one for all.
    KOL India | KOL management