Dr. Social Media, MD: suggestions for practice integration

If social media were integrated into my practice: a wish list.

1. Patients could willingly sign away bits of their confidentiality so they could participate in a conversation with other folks suffering from the same problem. "What did Dr. Berger not tell you about diabetes," they could ask each other, and I - listening in - could improve. (Or get sued, too. Malpractice reform is another discussion.)

2. There are so many issues many of my patients face together, here in Baltimore: poverty, single parenthood, substance abuse, tobacco use, food deserts, obesity, etc. Couldn't we share information and experiences, without the sterility of anonymity?

3. The Perils of Procedures: talk about your history, what tests you underwent that Dr. Berger recommended (or advised against!), and share what happened.

4. Patients could recommend specialists they have seen, medications they have taken...

5. In short, it's like wrongdiagnosis.com or the innumerable disease-discussion boards, but connected to a particular doctor and his/her environment.

1 comment:

  1. Reader LS left the following comment which I will respond to in the coming days:

    My interest was piqued by your piece today re: the use of social media by your patients. But what if patients post erroneous information? The potential for providing inaccurate description and assessments of research is particularly problematic. As well, comments that question your integrity (e.g., that you providing treatment just to earn insurance reimbursement) could be particularly harmful and difficult to refute (because there's no way to do so without seeming to be defensive). In both cases, how do prevent incorrect information from going "viral?"