Social Media - "Are you on Facebook?"

Social Media - "Are you on Facebook?"

L. Michael Glode, MD, FACP, FASCO

Sep 13, 2010

I am sitting in the ASCO IT Committee meeting listening to the discussion of social media and how ASCO should be involved. The members of the committee are VERY aware of the challenges facing members in terms of information overload. Michael Fisch, our chair, said it best: "The membership is on the edge already with time commitments and generally regard any additional time demand as toxic." He was also very prescient in pointing out that it is the younger members of ASCO that have learned how to integrate this kind of technology into their lives at an early point in their careers (like high school) and may not regard this as toxic, but as a normal part of their existence. Presumably, only the very savvy and youngest members will be frequently reading these blogs, but one idea that came up is getting some of these folks involved on this committee. If you happen to be in this category, I urge you to contact Dr. Fisch directly at the hypertexted link associated with his name and see whether he can find a way for you to contribute or join in ASCO's effort to keep up with "your generation."


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Thomas Reid, MD, PhD

Sep, 16 2010 2:51 PM

I am on Facebook and Twitter - but I am not of the younger ASCO set.
Anyone can follow you on Twitter - I use this to disseminate oncology topics and those related to health-care reform.
Facebook is more restrictive - you decide who is in your "friend" and in specific groups. Benefit of Facebook depends on intended use: business (keep private info limited or restricted) or other.
Linked-In is more for the true colleague networking side of our business.

Thomas Reid MD

Carmen Gonzalez, JD

Sep, 16 2010 7:51 PM

Dear Dr. Glode:

You'll find more people over age of 45 on Twitter than ever before. In fact, the fastest growing demographic on Twitter are people age 50+. As to gaining guidance on how best to integrate social media within a physician's practice, I invite you and your colleagues to the Sunday evening chats on Twitter at 6pm PDT by searching the hastag #HCSM. (The best way to view and participate is actually on Tweetchat, and entering "HCSM" as the chatroom you'd like to enter.) This group is comprised of doctors, health care providers, hospital professionals, technological experts, marketing pros within health care, and all manner of people interested in creating best practices for social media use in health care. The official site for this group is —the transcripts from past chats are here. The European counterpart to the group above is #HCSMEU and they have a site run by two very helpful and engaging folks: Andrew Spong and Silja Choquet.

I highly recommend the resources provided by Mayo Clinic’s great social media leader, Lee Aase, who has a slew of tutorials on how health care folks can use social media, how to get started, etc. His site is called SMUG. His PPTs are freely available online at by clicking on the “Curriculum” tab. Just last week, the Mayo Clinic launched its Center for Social Media (see here

Lastly, some of the individuals from the HCSM chats (Dr. Mark Richnmond and Dr. Mark Dimor) and I have formed a blog to flesh out some of the HCSM topics more fully. Here’s my latest article on the site to give you a sense of what we discuss:

I hope this helps.

Carmen R. Gonzalez

L. Michael Glode, MD, FACP, FASCO

Sep, 17 2010 10:36 PM

Thanks for the comments and the links Carmen. I will try to work my way into the 21st century and have made a small step into this by following Bob Miller @RSM2800

Matthew S. Katz, MD

Sep, 21 2010 4:58 PM

Carmen gives some excellent suggestions on where to start. #hcsm on Sunday evening is a real-time conversation that is very stimulatng a great way to meet engaged people interested in healthcare and social media. Lee is also a good place to start.

For Facebook, I have only recently started using it. I was hesitant initially but I have become increasingly comfortable with the idea that the 'personal is professional', and vice versa. That's not for everyone but I've found it a rewarding part of my life and my practice.

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