How to use social media in clinical practice keeping up with research

Using social media in clinical practice covers a big spectrum, from attacting certain clients (marketing) to getting the message out about what you do (content distribution) to keeping up to date with what is happening in your area.  The previous post focused on how to use social media in practice to get your professional profile online, this post focuses on how to keep up to date.

Keeping up with research using social media

There are many sites which put out new research and information on a regular basis, for example ‘Neuroscience and pain science for manual physical therapists’[1], which is run by a Canadian physiotherapist Diane Jacobs, or ‘Body in Mind’[2], which is run by a clinical science research team at Neuroscience Research Australia. Other sites, such as Research Blogging[3] or Science blogs[4] do the aggregating and sifting of other sites for you and you choose the topics in which you are interested. Public Facebook pages can be read without joining Facebook and one can consider such sites as a bit like a public newspaper, only free.

If you want to tap into social media networks with your own site, work out who your site is for – clinicians, researchers, Joe public – and then tap into the relevant social networks. in this case the primary goal might be dissemination of information. Again, virtual networks eventually convert to physical networks as people communicate and spread the word. Or, as Harvard Professor Nicholas Christakis said:

‘Our experience of the world depends on the architecture of the ties around us, it depends on the actual structure of the networks in which we are residing and on all the kinds of things that ripple and flow through the network.’[5].