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Healthcare Social Media Week in Review: December 12, 2011

Five Reasons Why Physicians Need to Use Social Media

Jamie Rauscher

Physician participation in social media is a health care imperative according to Dr. Kevin Pho, a practicing internist and the founder of, a leading online health portal; however, many physicians remain skeptical about the value of social media. At an Ethics Forum hosted by the Massachusetts Medical Society on December 2, 2011, Pho suggested several reasons why physicians need to embrace new ways to communicate with their patients. Read More

Physicians, Risk and Opportunity in the Digital Age

Bryan Vartabedian

This is a remarkable time to be in medicine. We’re in the midst of a communication revolution not seen since the time of the printing press. The world is changing around us. What we do 50 years from now will be unrecognizable to today’s generation of doctors. What it means to be a doctor is changing very quickly. This includes the way we communicate. I see 3 forces acting to redefine the physician. Read More

Microsoft Bows out of the Clinical Market

John More

Today, GE and Microsoft announced a joint venture (JV) that will lead to the formation of a new company (NewCo) targeting the clinical healthcare market sector. Combine the above announcement with Microsoft’s long anticipated sale of Amalga HIS, which went to Orion Health in October, and you are left with Microsoft completely pulling out of the clinical market. Sure, they’ll claim to be still in healthcare by directly selling their horizontal products (e.g., SharePoint, MS Office, various server products, etc.) into this sector and having a stake in this JV, but it is also exceedingly clear that Microsoft will no longer have any direct involvement in this market, that will be left to GE. Read More

Shoot First, Apologize Later: Why Pharma Needs to Proceed without Social Media Guidelines

DJ Edgerton

With more than 75 percent of people using the Internet, social media is an important component of business communication. Yet, many pharmaceutical companies are still behind the eight ball when it comes to online interaction and taking advantage of this medium.
Back in 2009, the Food and Drug Administration said guidelines were coming, only to backtrack on that by delaying any formal rules and dropping social media from its 2011 guidance agenda. It’s understandable that without guidelines people are unsure how to proceed. But those who don’t take action now may miss out on an effective way to communicate with customers. Read More

Promoting Participatory Medicine with Social Media: New Media Applications on Hospital Websites that Enhance Health Education and e-Patients’ Voices

The nature of health communication is changing as people increasingly seek health information on the internet. The objective of this study was to investigate how hospital websites utilize a variety of e-health tools; online communication technologies such as social media, video, podcasts, and interactive formats. The findings provided an exploratory look at how hospitals provide web-based health information to patients.The convergence of interactive media formats with web-based communication tools will likely enhance e-patient education and promote patient involvement in ways that alter traditional health care interactions, and may lead to enhanced levels of participatory medicine. Read More.

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