VPR, February 21, 2011

I'm pretty sure my internist isn't on Twitter. And I think it's better that way. I really do.

When I take a look at what some doctors tweet I get a little worried. Would they describe my visit, sometimes explicitly, in 140 characters?

Turns out I'm not the only one to wonder about this. In a letter published this week in JAMA, Dr. Katherine Chretien, a hospitalist at the Washington DC VA Medical Center, and some colleagues describe their look at what "self-identified physicians" were tweeting about.

What did they find in their analysis of 260 accounts that had at least 500 followers?

Well, about half the 5,156 tweets they looked at had something to do with health or medicine. Twelve percent of tweets were self-promotional, and 1 percent actually recommended some sort of medical product or service.

Facebook icon
LinkedIn icon
Twitter icon