How social media help doctors in their practice?
When it comes to developing a strong online presence- social media works like magic. Like every other professional in different fields, doctors have also started maintaining active social media presence. Doctors these days are using Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and many other social media profiles regularly to interact with patients outside of the office, and share helpful medical information.
Social media is a great platform for doctors and physicians to spread awareness expose their practices in front of more audience and attract new patients. Social media allows doctors to build and maintain their reputations more effectively and market their practices efficaciously. By getting involved online, doctors can literally observe and control what patients think about them and rework on their damaged reputations.
According to a PwC Health Research Institute study (2012), 41% of patients take social media content into consideration before selecting a doctor for consultation. So doctors, who use social media effectively, have more credibility than those who don’t.
“Doctors that market themselves and talk to patients through social channels likely have a certain business edge over those that don’t, in the sense that they are visible, open and generate higher awareness with potential patients,” says Peter Kirk, SERMO CEO.
Connecting with Patients
Doctors can use social media to support their patients outside the clinic and/or hospital. According to Mayo Clinic’s data, 60% of doctors have said that social media improves the quality of care they deliver to patients. Social media allows doctors to someway get into the private lives of their patients, observe what they are thinking, doing with their daily lives, their addictions and even what they are eating. By getting access to such data, doctors develop a better understanding of their lifestyle and present condition; therefore serve their patients’ needs more effectively.
The Right Education
A huge number of patients worldwide use the internet, specifically social media to gather healthcare information. If doctors take the responsibility of sharing the right information with the general people in the form of accurate, up-to-date material, the risk of acquiring inaccurate data and its harmful effects can be avoided. There is plenty of health-related information online, but very few of that are doctor-created content. If doctors start using their social media platforms to post links to authentic healthcare news, journal articles, credible online resources, and research studies then the general public will get the right knowledge to educate themselves with.
Doctors are often too busy to regulate their social media profile every now and then. But it is also a fact that using social media is necessary to strengthen their online presence and reputation. So here are some complications (that doctors might face) and how they can solve those.
Not enough time: Pick one specific social network every day to focus on and invest 15-30 mins in that. Identify a day when you are comparatively less burdened with work, fix that day for developing and scheduling content for the whole week. You can also recruit a social media specialist to manage your professional social media profiles.
Not enough help from staff: Why do you need the help from your staff when managing social media profile is not a difficult task? Set your browser’s homepage to a social media network. This way you will continuously get a reminder to post or sign up for an industry newsletter, etc.
Not knowing what to write/post: Go for the trending topic. Give insights and analysis on topics that are mostly searched and “trending” on social media. People start following trends without knowing the outcome, rather the right outcome. You use your platform and develop content to provide answers for exactly the same.
The Privacy Issue: Preserving patient privacy is one thing physicians need to be careful of. As per the HIPAA regulations, doctors should refrain from giving personal medical advice or reveal any patient information online.
Posted by Healthcare Marketers for Doctors Email Database