Social Media, A Tool to Use in Healthcare
Picture source: www.linkedin.com
BY: AMANDA MEWBORN
INDUSTRIAL ENGINEER – VOLUME 45, Number 5
Commonly, the social media is used to keep us in touch with our friends or relatives. But we have never been sure what value these types of media bring to business, especially healthcare.
She heard about how the majority of healthcare services are provided to “older” people who don’t use social media and she thinks that the benefit was quite small. But she was wrong after she saw some statistics at healthcareitnews.com that provide an info graphic on the use of social media and mobile technologies in healthcare.
“Sixty percent of doctors say social media improves the quality of care delivered to patients.”
“One-third of consumers now use social media sites and online forums for health-related matters, including seeking medical information, tracking and sharing symptoms, and broadcasting how they feel about doctors, drugs, treatments, medical devices and health plans.”
“Over half of the senior population online was ready to use the Internet to manage their healthcare and communicate with their physicians.”
“Forty-one percent said social media would affect their choice of a specific doctor, hospital or medical facility.”
Her friend did research online and found that the provider had one positive and two neutral reviews on a website and then decided not to see the provider. This is concerning because people are making decisions mostly on subjective, not objective information on the data that isn’t statistically significant. Probably there is a role for IE in educating the healthcare community on interpreting and using data to make informed decisions. To make it happen, we can start by joining Society for Health Systems’ group on LinkedIn, which offers many opportunities for discussions.