Mixing social media and medicine

Dr. Twitter is in the house.

Please excuse this break from your normally scheduled athlete-social media posts for a look at something completely different but equally interesting:

Doctors.

Yes, doctors. Largely lost in the Twitter takeover is the medical world’s place in all of it. As CNET pointed out, doctors could stand to gain plenty with some careful Tweets of advice here and there.

But many have forsaken the new medium, instead opting to carry on business as usual. According to one doctor quoted in the aforementioned piece, a lot of it has to do with pressure from the old guard:

“I took a lot of heat from it among doctors, old doctors, and I actually stopped doing it because I thought I’d rather blog about the health care industry rather than what I was doing in my practice,” Parkinson told CNET.

The piece also mentions that many doctors feel a solid practice will create all the publicity necessary for a successful career, and that Twitter carries with it a stigma of unnecessary self-promotion.

Still, I think the medical world is squandering a real opportunity to help out the masses here. If doctors are hesitant to take to social media under their own name, then we need more willing if anonymous contributors (like Dr. Cranquis) offering their words of wisdom.

WebMD can answer only so many questions. A world with actual doctors answering questions about warts and aches and fevers in real time is a vast improvement from the one we currently live in. People say there’s no substitute for the real thing, so why not get the real thing on board with helping people?

Social media can be a landfill of inane thoughts and absurd trends. It only makes sense to try and get some of our best and brightest on Twitter and Facebook lending a hand to the people who most need them.

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