The top 10 healthcare companies on social media
Since it is such a regulated industry, the majority of healthcare organizations have avoided the realm of social media.
However, some healthcare providers are now starting to realize the opportunities to build awareness and promote their brand all while still serving the public, patients and physicians.
Many consumers in today’s digital age use social media platforms to make important health decisions, such as selecting their doctor, hospital and different types of treatment available.
Although social media helps healthcare professionals to communicate and improve health outcomes, the legal and risks of non-compliance with rules and regulations have skyrocketed as the industry begins to embrace it.
Below is the list of the top healthcare companies on social media, which originally appeared in the January issue of Healthcare Global.
10. Merck & Co.
Since launching its social media accounts on Twitter and Facebook in 2011, Merck has used social media as a way to reshape its image. In addition, the company’s segment-targeted “Merck for Mothers” Facebook and Twitter pages have sparked much more conversation in recent years.
With a corporate site that has over 650,000 Facebook fans focusing heavily on mothers and children, as well as areas it has prescription drug therapies such as asthma and teenage depression. In addition, J&J has used social media well during crisis management situations during its product recalls.
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A cause-based non-profit, Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) provides thought leadership, community building, professional development, public policy and events to it social media followers. It also keeps industry analysts informed of the best uses of health IT to improve global health.
With over 75,000 Twitter followers, Bayer Healthcare has generated interest through adopting a fresh strategic approach. Many of its tweets revolve around promotion and awareness days, which Bayer also markets its annual Grants4Apps healthcare incubator program on both Twitter and Vine.
The Clinic’s content-driven social media strategy has proven to be successful across the full spectrum of online platforms. With over 553,000 Twitter followers, the company strives to find a way to become a meaningful part of people’s everyday lives even when they aren’t sick or need healthcare service. Cleveland Clinic approaches it as if it’s a part of consumer’s lives when healthy, people will consider going to it when they need care.
The AMA promotes the art and science of medicine and the betterment of public health. It’s goal is to improve the health of the nation, enhance the delivery of care and enable physicians and health teams to partner with patients to achieve better health for all. With over 560,000 Twitter followers, the AMA regularly promotes events and links to inform citizens of the latest healthcare news.
With very active accounts on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube, Novartis is among the fastest-growing companies on social media. The pharma company uses different Twitter tactics to engage consumers, such as interviews conducted on Twitter dubbed “twitterviews,” as well as “tweetchats.”
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3. Boehringer Ingelheim
Despite having a smaller-than-average community, pharmaceutical company Boehringer Ingelheim excels on social media behind a small group of loyal retweeters. With a social media strategy that is broad and engaged, Boehringer is exceptionally active on Pintrest, Vine and Instagram. Its social networks are also featured on the company’s home page and are cross-linked with one another. In addition, Boehringer is the first pharma company to fully engage with social media and the concept of digital health.
After facing concerns that it wasn’t being seen by its peers as a leader in healthcare innovation, Philips Healthcare set out to increase the credibility of its products through a series of LinkedIn groups. Through high-quality debates as well as polls and other engagement features, Philips attracted over 73,000 followers to its group. Also, by actively managing and promoting its LinkedIn company page, Philips has lured over 250,000 company subscribers. With new status updates every few days, this has caused a constant flow of engagement and new subscribers.
The Mayo Clinic has been able to leverage and enhance its reputation as a trusted source of information through its large online presence and expansive social media platforms. The company created the Mayo Clinic Center for Social Media in 2010 to coordinate and focus the clinic’s several social media programs and initiatives. The company uses social media to get patients to become better advocates for their own care.
Mayo Clinic’s social media philosophy is individuals have the right and responsibility to advocate for their own health, and it is the company’s responsibility to help them use social media tools to get the best information, connect with providers and with each other, and inspire healthy choices.
Behind strong brand recognition, putting social media at the forefront of its mission, understanding the importance of social media engagement, support from its leadership as well as a love for innovation, the Mayo Clinic is the top healthcare company on social media.
Top 10 healthcare innovations for 2019
We take a look at some of the top 10 healthcare innovations which are transforming the sector
The telehealth market is booming. Consumers are leading increasingly busy lifestyles, with up to 60% favouring digitally-led services. Providing clinical care at a distance, increasing accessibility and eradicating potential delays has given patients greater control, boosting patient satisfaction and overall engagement. Such is its exponential growth, The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services in the US has recently released its proposed Physician Fee Schedule and Qualified Payment Programme updates for 2019, where telehealth services has been heavily featured, in order to deliver ‘different access points’ for patients.
9. Mobile technology
Consumers have become accustomed to accessing their data through the use of various digital tools, where the use of mobile and tablet health apps has tripled from 13% in 2014 to 48% today. Catering to this growing market, British based start-up Babylon Health is making waves on a global scale. Partnering with the National Health Service (NHS) and private health provider, Bupa, it has also cemented its presence across the flourishing Chinese market, with a membership base exceeding 1.4mn citizens across Europe, Asia and Africa. By partnering with global juggernaut Tencent, Babylon’s artificial intelligence system has enabled both parties to interact directly with users, identify specific illnesses, deliver health status assessments, and triage necessary actions. The mobile app is available to over a billion users and linked to more than 38,000 medical facilities in China alone.
8. Artificial intelligence
Artificial intelligence (AI) applications, such as predictive analytics for patient monitoring has provided significant financial savings. Applications that target hospitals and medical institutions include patient monitoring and transcribing notes for electronic health records (EHRs). The European Union is set to invest $24bn into artificial intelligence (AI) by 2020 in a bid to catch up with Asia and the US, who have invested heavily in AI and cloud services. This year, Google revealed its plans to harness AI and machine learning across a multitude of consumer technologies, particularly in healthcare. “If AI can shape healthcare, it has to work through the regulations of healthcare. In fact, I see that as one of the biggest areas where the benefits will play out for the next 10-20 years,” Google CEO Sundar Pichai has previously stated.
Blockchain is estimated to reach over $5.61bn by the end of 2025, even though it remains dependent on the ability to record and store information conveniently, economically and securely amongst different applications and systems. Providing transparency and eliminating third-party intermediaries, processes are streamlined, reducing healthcare costs exponentially. Unlocking the ability for providers to deliver a value-based healthcare system and enhance patient engagement, blockchain could save the industry up to $100-$150bn per year by 2025 in data breach-related costs, IT costs, operations costs, support function costs and personnel costs, according to BIS Research. Partnering with pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), Ethereum blockchain-based supply chain platform, Viant sought to accelerate the pace of blockchain-based supply chain systems. Accenture and supply chain giant DHL have also developed a blockchain-based serialisation prototype which tracks pharmaceuticals from the point of origin to the consumer.
6. Health wearables
With the rise of lifestyle diseases, such as diabetes, more consumers are turning to health wearables that monitor glucose, heart rate, physical activity and sleep to gain a greater understanding of their health conditions. Following on from the release of the first Bluetooth headset back in 2000, the growing interest in wearables has seen monitoring our health and data become standardised. This data can be analysed by sophisticated algorithms to drive long-term diagnosis and support. Partnering with Google, health wearables company Fitbit is exploring the development of consumer and enterprise health solutions. Its acquisition of HIPAA-compliant health platform, Twine Health has seen the business enhance its clinical services by bringing on board a coaching platform, empowering people to seek better health outcomes.
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5. Electronic health records tools
From 2018-2022, the electronic health records (EHR) market is expected to grow at a compound average rate of 6% per year Providers and organisations continue to house fragmented technologies which create barriers towards collaboration and data sharing opportunities. This is further exacerbated if a patient straddles both public and private healthcare. Technology giant Apple has integrated patients’ medical records into its Health App as part of its iOS 11.3 beta. The data is encrypted and protected with the user’s iPhone passcode. Partnering with hospital providers and clinics, patients are now able to view their medical records from multiple providers within one platform. Johns Hopkins Medicine, Cedars-Sinai, Penn Medicine, UC San Diego Health and even the Cleveland Clinic have implemented this technology.
4. Healthcare transportation
Non-emergency health transportation remains a key issue worldwide, preventing patients from getting to or from a doctor’s appointment. 25% of lower-income patients have missed or rescheduled appointments due to lack of transportation, costing US health systems up to $150bn each year. Transportation companies such as Lyft and Uber have therefore entered the market by partnering with state governments to reduce these costs and deliver personalised patient care.
3. 3D Printing
Healthcare providers are set to represent the second largest industry sector in 3D manufacturing. The Food & Drug Administration’s decision to release its first comprehensive framework advising manufacturers of 3D medical products highlights its growing impact where more than 100,000 knee replacement surgeries are completed each year using 3D-printed, patient-matched surgical guides, for example. Through this process, surfaces and structures can be optimised for strength, weight and material use. Consultation between surgeons and patients has also been bolstered, where patients can better understand the complexity of his or her specific needs.
As consumers get more involved in the management of their health, consumer genetics and research companies have grown in popularity and scale. People want to further understand their genetic makeup, leading personal genomics and biotech company 23andMe to become one of the largest consumer-based organisations worldwide. Interestingly, this year, the company has entered a four-year collaboration with GSK to develop new treatments, but using human genetics as the basis for discovery.
Not only looking to develop treatments by analysing human genetics, pharmaceutical companies are looking to even remove hereditary genes which pass diseases down generations. In 2017, human embryos were successfully ‘edited’ through gene editing tool, CRISPR (Clustered, Regularly Interspaced, Short Palindromic Repeats), eradicating hypertrophic cardiomyopathy within 42 embryos.
1. Vertical integrations
As healthcare providers aim to provide greater transparency, promote collaboration and lower escalating patient costs, 2018 has been the year for a significant number of vertical integrations. CVS Health’s $68mn takeover of health insurer Aetna is a case in point. By influencing more of the supply chain, it will gain significant negotiating power to reduce costs for payers and patients, develop personalised solutions and improve overall outcomes. It will also promote the eradication of delays in process by removing any third parties within traditional business models. Other notable integrations are Optum’s acquisition of the DaVita Medical Group, Humana and Kindred Healthcare and Cigna and Express Scripts.
Reports have indicated that not only has the number of healthcare deals more than doubled in the last five years, the size of deals has also grown as a result of repeat investor interest, highlighting that this trend is here to stay.