Speaking of social networking health sites, a WebMD blog entry offers some tips for patients who seek health information and support online. Among them:
Think about what you want from an online community and understand that different sites will offer you different types of connections. Communities that develop on social networking sites like Facebook or LinkedIn, for example, are broad in scope and gather a group of people who simply know each other. According to [Brian Loew, founder and CEO of Inspire.com], most disease-oriented foundations have a Facebook page, with discussions focusing most heavily on fundraising, upcoming events and building awareness. Within niche communities on the other hand -- those developed on the basis of a shared medical condition -- the conversations tend to be deeper in nature, with members talking about specific symptoms, treatments and the emotional impact of dealing with illness.
Previously: How patients use social media to foster support systems, connect with physicians