Online social networking has become a significant component in our lives and is now poised to make inroads into our health care systems. The connected generation of medical students, nurses and other health professionals are now constantly connected to the Internet through their mobile phones, computers and other Internet-accessible devices. Online social networking sites such as Facebook, Ning, You-tube and Twitter now account for approximately 23% of all Internet traffic. This phenomenon has created unique opportunities and challenges for health professionals. For example, enterprising professionals have established health related online communities to collaboratively develop manuals and textbooks using Wikis. Physicians discuss clinical issues and hear other doctors’ opinions of diagnoses on Sermo.com. Facebook and Twitter have become venues for exhausted physicians to vent about patients. Unintentional disclosures of private health information on Facebook posts have led to disciplinary action against health care practitioners. This book focuses on the ubiquity of online social networking technology and the manner in which it is influencing our health care system.
This book will cover current areas on the use of social media in medicine. The book aims to provide discussions on the implications on social media and social networking in health care delivery. It is written for professionals as well as students who want to improve their understanding of the impact of social networking in health delivery from diverse perspectives.