After reviewing the benefits and risks of social media, we examine online discussion boards to determine the thoughts of physicians and patients regarding the use of Facebook to communicate with one another about health-related issues. Of the 290 comments analyzed, we found 42 percent were opposed to physicians using Facebook. Additionally, most (51.7 were opposed to physicians being Facebook “friends” with patients. Most opponents expressed concerns about privacy and the need to maintain professional boundaries in the physician-patient relationship. We provide suggestions for how healthcare administrators can effectively manage their social media presence and provide assistance to physicians.
Peluchette, J., Karl, K., & Coustasse, A. (2013, November). How could, should, and would physicians use Facebook with patients [Presentation slides]? SMA 2013 Meeting, New Orleans, LA.