WONCA Europe

WONCA 2013: The Importance of Using Social Media in Rural Medicine

The Importance of Using Social Media in Rural Medicine workshop will be held during the WONCA World 2013 Conference Prague on Wednesday 26th June 2013, at 10.30am (room Club E).

Organised by the Vasco da Gama Movement and EURIPA, moderated by R. Gomez Bravo, C. Lygidakis, S. Begg, E. McPhee, M. Sattler, R. Zoitanu, S. Rigon, N. Harris, S. Cherry, S. Maroto.

Abstract

Objective

To analyse the importance, impact and use of Social Media among rural professionals worldwide.

Methods

The confluence of social media (SM) and medicine has many benefits, but isolated and rural Family Physicians are still not taking advantage of the opportunity to create this virtual network and to reach their patients and colleagues on the online community that has formed around SM websites to take medical interests forward.

We will offer a basic workshop on SM tools through real examples developed by rural doctors, who are reducing isolation and making rural areas more attractive thanks to it. We will also discuss about the 3 social media obstacles that they face normally underlying the opportunities that each one present: risk, education and time, trying to find out the benefits outweigh the costs.

Results

SM and technology are providing a new way of Communication between professionals and patients, P2P. How to use it and how to design these strategies to improve communication, health outcomes, health quality and equity is possible but we are dealing with a lack of knowledge in our professional network on how to use these tools for communication, for developing skills, participation and engagement, what are the legal regulations, opportunities and benefits of using them.

Conclusions

SM has a huge potential in Primary Care and EURIPA-VdGM in collaboration with other Young Movements and rural SoMe experts will show how can be used by GPs to strengthen organizations, their practice or how to use it as a tool for patients.