Why Hospitals Need To Engage With Social Media
Written by Adam Groff
Social networking is all about bringing people together, so it’s not surprising that healthcare and social media are a perfect fit.
Patients that are able to easily connect with hospitals and clinics outside routine visits feel as though their doctors and hospital staff are going the extra mile to ensure good health. And, thanks to social media, staying connected outside the exam room really does have a positive effect on patient/doctor relationships.
With social media medicine in mind, here are just a few reasons why hospitals should adopt social networking if they have not already >>>
An Improved Patient Experience
As stated before, patients appreciate the expert knowledge that hospitals provide, but scheduling an appointment for the purposes of advice just isn’t feasible. Luckily, with social media, patients are able to post health questions for specific doctors or the staff as a whole.
Just think, patients can follow or friend their doctors, hospitals can setup Facebook fan pages, and there’s no end to the possibilities when it comes to scheduling and confirming upcoming appointments.
With social media, hospitals are better able to connect and form relationships with patients on a digital level.
Listening and Learning
By monitoring what patients are saying via social media, hospitals are able to pinpoint issues and act accordingly by responding promptly and politely.
Besides, social media has quickly become a way for people to vent, which gives hospitals an opportunity to discover problem areas and appease patient frustrations.
Likewise, hospitals can take advantage of social media by posting specific questions about patient services and past experiences.
So, if there’s a certain doctor lacking bedside manner, if wait times are astronomical, or even if the hospital food is awful, hospitals can find out directly from patients via social media and then take action.
Newsletters for a New Era
Hospitals that connect with patients through social media have an easier time relaying information much like a monthly newsletter. Except, with social media, topics and information are delivered on a continuously updated basis.
This is great for hospitals wanting to go the extra mile to ensure patient health.
With social media, hospitals are able to notify patients of certain health concerns during flu season, share healthcare and healthy eating tips, and even introduce new and existing doctors, nurses, and other personnel by providing staff profiles.
When it comes to healthcare and social networking, hospitals have only scratched the surface.
This gives hospitals, clinics, and healthcare organizations of all kinds the opportunity to become industry leaders in the digital age of patient care.
Social media is a blank canvas for hospitals willing to discover new and improved ways to stay connected with patients and bring worlds together.
Whether it’s through engaging content, informative social updates, tracking and monitoring patient concerns, following other leaders in the healthcare industry, or simply messaging patients in recovery to see how they’re feeling, social media sets hospitals apart.
When hospitals turn to social media, they’re not only becoming part of the digital revolution, they’re becoming a part of their patients’ lives as well.
About the Author
Adam Groff is a freelance writer and creator of content. He writes on a variety of topics including personal health, payroll services, and social media.
C. Light aim to detect Alzheimer's with AI and eye movements
C. Light Technologies, a neurotechnology and AI company based in Boston, has received funding for a pilot study that will assess changes in eye motion during the earliest stage of Alzheimer's, known as mild cognitive impairment.
C. Light Technologies has partnered with the UCSF Memory and Aging Center for this research. As new therapeutics for Alzheimer’s are introduced to the clinic, this UCSF technology has the potential to provide clinicians a better method to measure disease progression, and ultimately therapeutic efficacy, using C. Light’s novel retinal motion technology.
Eye motion has been used for decades to triage brain health, which is why doctors asks you to “follow my finger” when they want to assess whether you have concussion. In more than 30 years of research, studies have revealed that Alzheimer’s disease patients' eye movements are affected by the disease, though to date, these eye movements have only been measured on a larger scale.
C. Light’s research takes the eye movement tests to a microscopic level for earlier assessments. Clinicians can study and measure eye motion on a scale as small as 1/100th the size of a human hair, which can help them monitor a patient’s disease and treat it more effectively.
The tests are also easy to administer. Patients put their chin in a chinrest and focus on a target for 10 seconds. The test does not require eye dilation, and patients are permitted to blink. A very low-level laser light is shown through the pupil and reflects off the patient’s retina, while a sensitive camera records the cellular-level motion in a high-resolution video. This eye motion is then fed into C. Light’s advanced analytical platform.
“C. Light is creating an entirely new data stream about the status of brain health via the eye,” explains Dr. Christy K. Sheehy, co-founder of C. Light. “Our growing databases and accompanying AI can change the way we monitor and treat neurological disease for future generations. Ultimately, we’re working to increase the longevity and quality of life for our loved ones."
At the moment developing therapeutic treatments for the central nervous system is difficult, with success rates of only 8% to go from conception to market. One reason for this is the lack of tools to measure the progression of diseases that impact the nervous system.
Additionally clinical trials can take a decade to come to fruition because the methods used to assess drug efficacy are inefficient. C. Light believe they can change this.
“Before this year, it had been almost 20 years since an Alzheimer’s drug was brought to market" explains Sheehy. "Part of the reason for this very slow progress is that drug developers haven’t had viable biomarkers that they can use to effectively stratify patients and track disease on a fine scale. The ADDF’s investment will allow us to do that."
C. Light has received the investment from the Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation (ADDF) through its Diagnostics Accelerator, a collaborative research initiative supported by Bill Gates, the Dolby family, and Jeff Bezos among other donors.
C. Light recently completed its second and final seed round raising $500,000, including the ADDF investment, which brings their total seed funding to more than $3 million. Second round seed funders included: ADDF, the Wisconsin River Business Angels, Abraham Investments, LLC and others.
The ADDF’s Diagnostics Accelerator has made previous investments in more than two dozen world-class research programmes to explore blood, ocular, and genetic biomarkers, as well as technology-based biomarkers to identify the early, subtle changes that happen in people with Alzheimer’s.