Since social media took flight in the late 90’s, it has grown to provide a living network of real-time connections on a global scale. From tweets scrolling across the screen during our favorite TV shows, to using hashtags to bring multiple conversations into one aggregated feed, to consumers receiving personal responses from big businesses online, social media is everywhere.
It has transformed communication into a two-way street. We are no longer only receiving information, but we are sharing it with friends and businesses too. This speed and mobility of communication is transforming industries, and healthcare is no exception.
Three recent examples of social media in healthcare prove the important role it can play in each of our lives.
- During the Boston Marathon bombing, the trauma team inside a Boston hospital saw tweets about the bombings directly after it occurred. The team leaped into action preparing themselves for emergency surgeries sooner than if they had heard it on a newscast.
- A woman in a bike race veered off course and was separated from the group. She needed medical attention after falling off her bike and with no cellphone reception, she turned to social media for help. Medical assistance arrived because of her online posts.
- It has become a common trend for doctors to connect with patients outside the office by posting videos on YouTube. Patients are able to go online to learn more about their condition and hear information first-hand from their own physician. This new way of communication can ease patient concerns and remind them of things they may have forgotten during their visit.
Advancements in social media provide stronger connections in times of medical need, allowing the medical community to listen to patients in whole new way.
Discover the tools to stay up-to-date with these social media trends in an upcoming blog post.