In recent years, social media platforms such as Twitter, LinkedIn, Doximity, and Facebook have become important tools for surgeons to network, learn, educate, disseminate research, and to foster mentorship and long-standing professional connections. A recent Journal of Surgical Research article by Heather Logghe MD et al. describes how surgeons in particular can use Twitter to advance their careers in academic surgery. Social media has revolutionized the way people interact by breaking down barriers between academic and social hierarchy, as well as boundaries between professional and personal lives. While this has substantial benefits for networking and for dissemination of ideas, there are particular challenges for medical professionals where having an impeccable reputation is essential for clinical practice and for academic advancement. Blurring of the line between personal and professional lives and improper use of social media can result in scrutiny regarding the professional behavior of physicians.
The June #AASchat will explore these issues through facilitated questions led by 5 distinguished moderators:
Dr. Drew Shirley (@drewshirleymd), Surgical Oncologist, Ohio State University Medical Center
Dr. Niraj Gusani (@NirajGusani), Associate Professor, Penn State Hershey Medical Center
Dr. Danielle Walsh (@walshds), Associate Professor, Pediatric Surgery, East Carolina University
Dr. Deanna Attai (@DrAttai), Assistant Clinical Professor of Surgery, University of California, Los Angeles
Dr. Sean Langenfeld (@SeanLangenfeld), Assistant Professor, Department of Surgery, University of Nebraska Medical Center
In the chat, scheduled on June 26 @ 8PM EST using the hashtag #AASchat, we will explore the following questions:
- What are strategies to avoid the pitfalls of social media and ensure one’s social media activities result in a positive impact on one’s professional career?
- Have you received patient feedback on your social media presence? If so, how has it influenced your participation in social media?What are strategies to handle negative comments and/or reviews on social media?
- In what circumstances (if any) is it appropriate for health care providers to establish social media relationships with patients?
- Does professionalism exclude political engagement? When (if ever) is it appropriate for health care providers to share political views on social media? What are the potential consequences?