Clinicians ‘never too old or too young’ to make use of social media

November 30, 2022

2 min learn


Crow C. Abstract 14M121. Presented at: ACR Convergence 2022; Nov. 11-14, 2022; Philadelphia (hybrid assembly).

Crow reported no related monetary disclosures.

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PHILADELPHIA — Understanding the social media panorama may also help rheumatologists study sufferers and join extra successfully with them, based on a presenter at ACR Convergence 2022.

“You can improve your clinical skills simply by learning what are the trends out there, what patients are talking about, what matters to them,” Cheryl Crow, MOT, founder and CEO of Arthritis Life, advised attendees.

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“You are never too old or too young to be on social media,” Cheryl Crow, OT, advised attendees. Source: Adobe Stock

Before she was an occupational therapist, Crow was recognized with rheumatoid arthritis. She is an lively social media person who makes use of her Arthritis Life platform to offer content material to a number of ends.

One is to supply what she referred to as “life hacks” for sufferers with arthritis — all the pieces from solutions for wrist compressors to tips for buckling a baby’s automotive seat.

She additionally options provider-directed content material to assist occupational therapists, rheumatologists and different professionals perceive the affected person perspective.

A 3rd purpose for Crow is to offer tips for well being care suppliers who would possibly like to hitch social media.

“You are never too old or too young to be on social media,” Crow stated.

Her first tip pertains to sharing info.

“Maintaining patient confidentiality is at the forefront,” she stated.

Providers might focus on scientific eventualities however ought to make each effort to not reveal private details about the sufferers concerned.

Clinicians also needs to be aware of the constraints of their licensure and experience.

“Stay within your professional scope,” Crow stated. “Avoid answering questions that are not in your field.”

An ancillary level is that citing applicable sources or knowledge units is crucial to sustaining skilled credibility on the web.

Another tip pertains to the period of time to spend on-line.

“It is about quality rather than quantity,” she stated, acknowledging that it’s simple to let just a few hours slip away scrolling by means of senseless content material or partaking in unproductive discussions or arguments.

“Before you go onto social media, you should think, ‘What is my purpose right now?’” Crow stated.

The period of time is much less of a priority if the time is spent effectively, both studying new info or offering info for sufferers, she added.

Humor could be an efficient device for gaining consideration or offering info, however Crow endorsed physicians to make use of warning on this regard as effectively.

“When using humor on your social media site, be careful not to be laughing at patients,” she stated.

To the purpose of studying the affected person perspective, Crow pressured that sufferers who’re lively social media customers might not signify everything of the affected person inhabitants with that situation.

“You can get a skewed view of what patients may be thinking,” she stated.

Crow supplied the instance of hostile occasions related to drugs: “Often, only patients who have severe side effects will post about them.”

Clinicians also needs to concentrate on the accuracy of data they discover on social media, the bias it might include, and the “echo chambers” the place social media algorithms register the habits of a person and supply content material that matches these habits.

“Make sure you are checking the quality and source of the information you find,” Crow stated.

As a closing level, Crow famous that suppliers who interact on social media are prone to incur criticism. Each clinician ought to make the selection of whether or not this can be a worthwhile trade-off.

To that time, she quoted author Elbert Hubbard.

“To avoid criticism, say nothing, do nothing, be nothing,” she stated. “But if you make the choice not to engage, here is the consequence: You have a lack of impact.”

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