What We Can Learn from Two of NYCís Best Hospitals

Healthcare Informatics—October 28, 2013

This week, I [Gabriel Perna, writer] read a great article in the Social Times (ST) about what hospitals are doing with social media.

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Perils aside though, Iím encouraged when I see hospitals of the world are doing. Iím encouraged when I see Hospital for Special Surgery (HSS) engaging patients with complex diseases on Facebook.

In a recent study, researchers at HSS used Facebook chats to raise awareness of lupus, an autoimmune disease. The hospital teamed with a community-based lupus organization, S.L.E. Lupus Foundation, to publicize the chat, and subsequently tripled the number of participants. It went from 2,280 users and 60 questions in May 2012 to 6,624 people and 162 questions. According to the Lupus Center of Excellence at Special Surgery, the Facebook chats raised awareness, helped them reach a wider audience, and perhaps most importantly, allowed for interaction between patients and providers.

ďThe Facebook chats provide a new venue to get information from rheumatologists and other health professionals who understand this complex disease. Lupus patients are hungry for information, and with social media, we can address their specific concerns in real time,Ē Jane Salmon, M.D., director of the Lupus Center of Excellence and senior author of the study, said in a statement.

Read the full story at healthcare-informatics.com.

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