Blogworld and New Media Expo Offer Social Health Track

By Barbara Ficarra, RN, BSN, MPA

Social media has changed the landscape in health care.  Social media is a powerful and phenomenal platform to help educate consumers, raise awareness of health issues and connect with consumers and colleagues.

Social media gives a voice to patients and consumers and it allows the conversation to get started with doctors and other health care professionals.  Social media is all about the patient and it paves the way for new modern medicine to emerge.

Tapping into technology allows for the real-time and immediate exchange of information.

Consumers and physicians tapping into social media networking

According to a study published by Pew Internet and American Life Project, 65% of adult internet users use social networking sites and 80% of internet users gather health information online.

In a recent study by QuantiaMD and Care Continuum Alliance, over 65% of physicians use some form of social media for professional use.  (In addition to Facebook and LinkedIn other social networking sites include professional and patient networking communities specific to the medical field, blogs and sites such as YouTube.)  [Source: Doctors, Patients and Social Media (PDF file)]

Leverage social strategies

Physicians and other health care professionals can identify with companies that leverage social platforms to help guide them.  Connection is key when it comes to winning social strategies.

A few of the many companies leveraging social media include:  IBM, Zappos and Johnson & JohnsonAccording to Mashable, IBM was the first large venture to embrace employee blogging, and now there are thousands of blogs related to every facet of its business; Zappos is a master at twitter when it comes to collaboration, and Johnson & Johnson uses blogs to show another side of the company, with frequent video posts and interviews.

“I think health care companies have a great opportunity to connect with patients, physicians, nurses and other digital health organizations through the use of social media. By listening, sharing and learning, we will be able to participate in this conversation, and hopefully provide a more open, personalized and effective means of communication with health care consumers and professionals,” said Rob Halper, a director in the Corporate Communication department at Johnson & Johnson. [Source:]

Johnson & Johnson is proud to be the lead sponsor, for the third year, of the Social Health Track at BlogWorld.

Blogworld and New Media Exp connects industries

Blogworld and New Media Expo connects a variety of industries including these sessions:  Digital Broadcasting, Travel and Tourism, Type A Parent, Food, Marketing, Mobile, and Music; and  a variety of social health tracks are also offered.

As a registered nurse and writer, I’m thrilled  to be the moderator for a Social Health Track Panel.

The title of the session is:  “Physicians Engaging Online in Social Health.”

The physician panel includes:

Val Jones, MD, CEO, Better Health, LLC
Nick Genes, MD, PhD, Physician, Informaticist
Jen Dyer, MD, MPH, Physician, Tech Entrepreneur
Barbara Ficarra, RN, BSN, MPA, Founder, Editor-in-Chief,

Your turn

We would love to learn how you use social media networking.  Please share your thoughts in the comment section below.  Will you be attending Blogworld?

As always, thank you for your valuable time.

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About the Social Health Track at Blogworld:

Through the use of social media and digital technologies, patients, physicians, nurses and caregivers are obtaining information, sharing data and connecting with other like-minded individuals to help them make informed decisions that impact health outcomes. At the 2011 Social Health Track at the BlogWorld and New Media Conference in Los Angeles, organizers will bring together e-patient advocates, healthcare professionals, caregivers, healthcare providers and manufacturers to share insights, best practices and to discuss how digital approaches and social networking can be better used by patients and professionals to improve healthcare. Sessions in this focused track are for people who are interested in how the social web can be used to positively impact society, from members of the social health community (e-patients, e-doctors, online nurses and members of industry, etc.) to those interested in the effective application of digital and online technologies for change.

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