The influence of physician guided social media on patient information gathering
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
DescriptionA Thesis submitted to The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Medicine.
AbstractSocial media is ubiquitous in everyday life and more people find themselves utilizing these resources to interact with others and receive information. Among these users are breast cancer patients looking to find reliable information about their illness. As healthcare professionals, it is our duty to educate patients and provide relevant and accessible information. This prospective study will assess the influence of a physician mediated social media account on patient’s information gathering and understanding of their disease. We evaluated the number of interactions made on the social media pages and measured patient comprehension of information that is presented through social media and how this will impact their lifestyle choices. We provided patients at Mayo Clinic Phoenix’s Breast Cancer Clinic with links to a physician approved Facebook page that posts new findings, articles, clinical trials, and other relevant information We believe that providing patients with a source to find reputable information will allow them to be more engaged and knowledgeable about their health. Long term, this can help identify how to better reach and connect with patients and how to present information in a readily digestible manner. Our results indicate that patients who utilize patient oriented physician mediated social media accounts believe that these sites are more reliable than other information they find on social media (52.6%, p < .001), have a better understanding of their medical condition (p < .001), and 90.9% are more likely to develop healthy lifestyle habits.