Social media for patients: benefits and drawbacks
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Purpose of review
Social media is increasingly utilized by patients to educate themselves on a disease process and to find hospital, physicians, and physician networks most capable of treating their condition. However, little is known about quality of the content of the multiple online platforms patients have to communicate with other potential patients and their potential benefits and drawbacks.
Patients are not passive consumers of health information anymore but are playing an active role in the delivery of health services through an online environment. The control and the regulation of the sources of information are very difficult. The overall quality of the information was poor. Bad or misleading information can be detrimental for patients as well as influence their confidence on physicians and their mutual relationship.
Orthopedic surgeons and hospital networks must be aware of these online patient portals as they provide important feedback on the patient opinion and experience that can have a major impact on future patient volume, patient opinion, and perceived quality of care.
KeywordsSocial media Social networking Web 2.0 Internet Patient-patient relations
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
All authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
Human and animal rights and informed consent
This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.
Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance
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