por Diana Bradley
, Staff Writer | November 23, 2011
Social media savvy
Linking with health informatics, 2012 will see more stakeholders enter the data-sharing mix through social media - another avenue which risks the overexposure of information. To prevent this, health care organizations will need to build more granular access-controlled models, said PwC's report.
Social media has been utilized for health care purposes by nearly one-third (32 percent) of PwC's survey respondents, including half of people under the age of 35. The trend is expected to grow in 2012, as social media become part of organizations' overall strategy to improve health care and outcomes, helping patients connect with health organizations and other people with shared interests.
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"The importance of social media for health care purposes will continue to grow as more people with chronic diseases use social media channels," Jarrell said. "Social media will help to create a feeling of connectedness between health organizations and patients."
Social media websites such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube enable health organizations to gather real-time feedback as patients express opinions, rankings or reviews. The health industry can also use social media as an outlet for public interest stories, new product launches, supporting public health initiatives, and patient education.
"We see more and more health care organizations using Facebook or Twitter to announce education initiatives and linking to YouTube to give patients more information - they are using these sites to provide their patients with further resources," said Jarrell.
Based on the U.S. Hospital Social Network List, 1,229 hospitals nationwide currently use social networking tools and 4,118 hospital social networking sites exist. There are 575 that have YouTube Channels; 1,068 have Facebook pages; 814 have Twitter accounts; and 566 have LinkedIn accounts.
"Moving forward, we see tremendous growth across all health care organizations as technology gets better and as our understanding of how to utilize clinical information to improve patient outcomes gets better," said Jarrell. "We are going to see a huge focus on informatics and social media in the future."Back to HCB News