Social media professionalism: a set of principles for physicians

Last week, Dr Mark Ryan contributed a particularly insightful guest post at KevinMD.com entitled “How to maintain physician professionalism in social media.”  Dr Ryan has been one of a number of critics of the social media guidelines adopted recently by some professional medical organizations, such as the American Medical Association and the British Medical Association.  Dr Ryan has expressed his concern that these guidelines have focused to heavily on risk mitigation and that there are no corresponding documents that discuss principles and guidelines for appropriate, positive use of social media by physicians — a sentiment I also expressed in an earlier post on this blog.

So in his guest post, Dr Ryan strikes out to draft exactly such a statement of principles. His list includes nine very practical principles regarding scope, tone, privacy, identity, content, and more.  These are very useful principles for us to consider as we create a Social Media Toolbox for the University that can be a model set of guidelines for clinicians.  Please take some time to review Dr Ryan’s post — and let us know what you think in the comments.

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