Physicians and social media

docssocmed64% of physicians use at least one of the types of social network while 36% do not use any, according to the Sources & Interactions Study, September 2013. This breaks down to 13% of doctors using all three types, 25% using 2 of the 3, and 26% using only 1 of the 3 types.



Most physicians that use social networks choose to read and follow only as opposed to write and post, suggesting that they view these sites as another information source, rather than a platform to interact with colleagues or share their own expertise.

This year I was part of extensive research with physicians to learn why and how they use social media.  The key findings were..

1ne: Most PCP’s do no have the time to read or interact with social networks.

2wo: When they do use social media, it’s to connect to other HCP’s.

3hree: A small minority of physicians are responsible for most of the posts on social media.

4our: Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn are seen as consumer social networks.


5ive: Most physicians are angry at the suggestion that they need to be on social media because of time constraints.

6ix:Physicans get upset when people, via the web, suggest that doctors need to be on social media.

7even: Most of the least credible health information that patients bring in at appointments came from social media.

I happen to ask one group of doctors we had in research, why they didn’t use social media more and they responded, as a group, that they didn’t have the time to do take care of patients and paperwork let alone social media.  Most Internet time is spent on professional websites and reading medical journals.