Thursday, March 28, 2013

Podcast: Practical Guidance in the Use of Social Media in Oncology

This week we posted a podcast for ASCO's Journal of Oncology Practice on the topic of social media in oncology practice. This was based on an article that was published September 2012 in JOP, co-authored by several members of the Integrated Media and Technology Committee from ASCO. I currently chair that committee and was honored to be included as an author. Three of the article's contributors joined me for a stimulating 45-minute conversation about the power (and perils) of using social media from the viewpoint of an oncology professional, incorporating as well how a professional society like ASCO employs these tools. My guests were Dr. Don Dizon (@drdonsdizon), a medical oncologist at the Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center specializing in women's cancers and female sexual health, Dr. Mike Thompson (@mtmdphd), a medical oncologist in community practice in Wisconsin with an interest in hematologic malignancies and clinical trials, and Claire Johnston, Social Media Manager for ASCO.

You can listen to the podcast here on the JOP website, or this link will bring you to the iTunes store (you can also just search "Journal of Oncology Practice" on iTunes and find it that way). Also, please take a moment to read the full JOP article.

The conversation was wide ranging and covered many important points, including:

  • Why social media has become such an important form of communication in health care these days and the different ways physicians might use social media (patient care, health messaging for a lay audience, and professional networking/knowledge-sharing)
  • What are the special considerations for social media in the field of oncology in particular, compared with other medical specialties
  • What issues are raised when patients try to engage with their physicians using social media
  • What basic themes and principles we learned by examining the social media policies from about 35 other organizations ranging from the AMA to different hospitals and medical centers
  • What role social media plays as a member benefit and a communication/engagement tool for a professional society like ASCO
  • What special precautions must be kept in mind if you are using social media to spread the word about a clinical trial and improve recruitment
Hope you take the time to download the podcast and listen to it at the gym or driving to work! Your feedback is always welcome, either here or on the iTunes page.

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