March 5, 2015

Live tweeting in medicine: Tweeting the meeting

Tweeting during medical meetings is becoming more popular, and has the added benefit of generating off-line discussions and journal club interest.  (Int Rev Psychiatry. 2015 Mar 4:1-7.)
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February 13, 2015

Social media in communicating health information: an analysis of facebook groups related to hypertension.

Most hypertension-related Facebook groups evaluated in this study focused on disease awareness. Of the most recent posts, about 20% were focused on product or service promotion. About 20% were related to hypertension awareness. Facebook group activity was associated with group size (OR 1.02), likes on the most recent wall post (OR 3.6), and presence of attached files on the group wall (OR 5).  (Prev Chronic Dis. 2015 Jan 29;12:E11.)
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Communicating Ebola through social media and electronic news media outlets: A cross-sectional study.

News outlets were the major influence upon the content of Twitter messages during the Ebola outbreak. The authors of this research suggest that health care organizations can benefit from developing social media campaigns in co-operation with leading electronic news media outlets.  (Health Informatics J. 2015 Feb 5..)
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Features predicting weight loss in overweight or obese participants in a web-based intervention: randomized trial.

There was no significant difference in weight loss among participants randomly assigned to weight-loss focused websites featuring: a) information only, b) supportive-based, or c) personalized-supportive.  (J Med Internet Res. 2012 Dec 12;14(6):e173)
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January 28, 2015

Kids: Picture Me Smoke-Free

BACKGROUND: Young adults have rates of tobacco use that a too high.

QUESION: is it feasible to engage young adults with smoking cessation messages via online social networking?

METHODS: 60 young adults participated in an online Facebook photo group.

RESULTS: Facebook appears to be an accessible, low-cost platform for engaging young adults with stop smoking messages. A mixed gender and gender neutral group appears to be best.

CONCLUSIONS: Tobacco interventions should be embedded within existing social networking platforms, rather than designing a stand-alone online prevention or intervention resource.

J Med Internet Res. 2015;17(1):e27

January 26, 2015

Sexual Health Information on Social Media

BACKGROUND: Social media likely will play a key role in promoting sexual health.

QUESTION: are young people aged 16 to 29 years old comfortable receiving sexual health information via social media?

METHODS: 620 people aged 16 to 29 years old were surveyed.

RESULTS: Median use of social network sites was 2 hours per day. Participants stated they were comfortable or very comfortable accessing sexual health info from websites (85%), a doctor (81%), school (73%), the mainstream media (67%), Facebook (52%), apps (51%), SMS (44%), and Twitter (36%).

CONCLUSION: most participants were much less comfortable receiving sexual health information from social media sites as compared to getting the information from a website or a doctor.

Int J STD AIDS. 2014 Mar 10;

January 25, 2015

Social Media and Hospital Quality Perception

Public hospital quality report awareness: evidence from National and Californian Internet searches and social media mentions, 2012.
BACKGROUND: many consumers judge hospital quality based upon online reports and social media comments.

QUESTIONS: how often do consumers search hospital quality information online? Do they mention this information in social media? How positively do they view this information?

METHODS: Google Trends and Google Adwords keyword analyses were evaluated for keywords related to 'top hospital', best hospital', and 'hospital quality', as well an additional six specific hospital quality reports. In addition, a social media monitoring tool was used to investigate social media mentions of, and sentiment towards, major public reports of hospital quality.

RESULTS: Google search volume for 75 national hospital quality-related terms averaged 610 700 searches per month. Healthgrades was more commonly searched for nationally on Google than the federal government's Hospital Compare, which otherwise dominated quality-related search terms.

Social media references in California to quality reports were generally few. Commercially produced hospital quality reports were more widely mentioned than state or non-profit reports.

  • Consumers have some awareness of hospital quality based on Google search and social media.
  • Quality dissemination initiatives may benefit by advertising on Google or Twitter and using social media interactively.

BMJ Open. 2014;4(3):e004417