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How a "culture of permission" prevents doctors from being active in social media

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Last Thursday, organizers of the Stanford Medicine X conference hosted a live Google Chat on social media and doctors with Bryan Vartabedian, MD, and Wendy Sue Swanson, MD. Another physician-blogger, Mike Sevilla, MD, was among those who tuned in, and he had this to say today:

Why don't more physicians participate in social media? The obvious topics of (lack of) time and (the fear of) risk were mentioned. But, another topic that was mentioned was a "Culture of Permission" mentioned by @Doctor_V.

What is this culture of permission? I get this question all the time as well: "Hey Mike, who did you ask before you started utilizing social media?" Did I as my practice, my hospital, my malpractice attorney, or my wife? Actually, I did not. But, he's right in that there is this culture that exists that physicians must ask permission before doing something "risky" like use social media.

People focus too much on the bad and potentially bad stuff that can happen with social media. Of course they are out there. However, there are positive aspects to social media as well - like patient education (meaning patient education with right information and not wrong information), establishing a positive online presence for physicians, and utilizing social media for advocacy.

Previously: Stanford Medicine X hosts live chat on Thursday with Bryan Vartabedian and Wendy Sue Swanson, Advice for physicians when interacting with patients online, 33Charts’ Bryan Vartabedian talks about physician blogging, How can physicians manage their online persona? KevinMD offers guidance and Bryan Vartabedian: Physicians are public affairs professionals
Photo by Eneas

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