Did you know? Today, June 30, people all over the world are celebrating the seventh annual Social Media Day, or #SMDay. Social Media Day was launched in 2010 by Mashable as a way to recognize and celebrate social media’s impact on global communication.
Let’s celebrate five ways social media has made a tremendous impact on communication in health care, research, community and education.
Alleviating Patient Fears
Several hospitals have live-tweeted surgeries in hopes of providing transparency and alleviating future patients’ fear of the procedures. In 2013, UCLA live-tweeted a surgery to implant a brain pacemaker while the patient strummed a guitar. In 2015, Baylor University Medical Center tweeted a heart transplant surgery.
Sharing Research with Patients
Researchers have banded together to help parents ease their child’s cancer pain by placing cutting-edge pain management developments from medical journals into the hands of parents, using the hashtag #KidsCancerPain.
Building Communities of Support
Facebook groups, twitter hashtags and personal blogs are just a few of the ways that individuals facing major illness or chronic diseases seek each other out to build communities. These communities allow people to provide mutual support, share advice and build trust in each other.
With government-sponsored funding declining and groups like Research!America advocating for the health and economic benefits of medical research, researchers are turning to crowdfunding as an innovative alternative to fund research projects.
Advancing the Doctor-Patient Relationship
Social media creates a two-way dialogue between health care providers and their patients. This increases availability and access to health care information and digital health care records. It also allows patients to feel more informed and in control of their own care.