Pharmacists Influencing Healthcare Using Social Media

Category: Pharmacy by Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD - January 26, 2013 | Views: 6927 | Likes: 6 | Comment: 1

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Social media is part of our culture. From sharing pictures, updates, and professional networking, to engaging customers and organizing political movements, there is no question about the power of social media. Interestingly, social media is still in its infancy and experts believe that the true potential and value of social media has not been tapped. Social media empowers everyone to share their ideas, amplify their voice, and shape the world. Healthcare professionals are using social media to share healthcare knowledge, advance patient care, and influence their professions. We profile 3 pharmacists actively using social media to build their businesses and advance the pharmacy profession. They are actively participating in the social economy.

Pharmacists and Social Media

Goldina Erowele, PharmD

“An informed and educated patient and caregiver, means improved health, literacy and caregiving.”

Goldina is a Clinical Pharmacy Specialist (Formulary Management & Pharmacoeconomics) at Harris County Hospital District in Houston, Texas. When she is not working at the hospital she contributes content and manages CareNovateMag.com, her blog that focusses on caregiving for seniors, social health, and health literacy. The audience for CareNovateMag is over 65 million caregivers in the US, the sandwich generation families, seniors & working moms trying to balance it all CareNovateMag is all about simplified, yet actionable health, wellness and caregiving resources and tools.

Goldina is also active on Twitter, Linkedin, Google+, and Facebook. She hosts Twitter chat events (#CareRx) 3 times a month featuring healthcare innovators, caregiving advocates, clinical pharmacists, and other professionals who are helping patients and families face healthcare and caregiving challenges. #Carerx chat event has evolved into a healthcare & caregiving innovation interview series, answering questions and providing insights on improving patient care, improving outcomes, and reducing health related costs.

Jason Poquette, BPharm, RPh

Educating can and should be entertaining too”.

Jason is a pharmacist at Decision Resources Group. He owns The Honest Apothecary, a pharmaceutical news and information website for pharmacists and patients where he provides timely news and comments related to the pharmaceutical field.

About 6 years ago Jason realized how to blend pharmacy with social media by writing articles on Hubpages. His audience was small at first but after a few years it picked up and now he has over 1 million page views across over 100 articles he has posted on Hubpages. Because of his success at Hubpages he launched The Honest Apothecary. Jason also answers questions for online readers. Most questions he receives are from people just looking for options. He tries to assure patients that there is hope, especially when they feel they have exhausted all their options. So far, the response has been overwhelmingly positive.

Jason is active on Twitter and Linkedin. He has over 4000 Twitter followers and over 3000 tweets. He uses Twitter to communicate meaningful and sometimes just fun (or even silly) news and information.

Dave Walker, RPh

The best way to take care for patients is to educate them to take care of themselves.”

Dave is a consultant, speaker, educator, volunteer, and a social media enthusiast. He has owned an independent community pharmacy, a long term care consulting business, managed a hospital pharmacy, and managed two chain pharmacies.

Currently Dave is involved in several projects. He is the CEO and Founder of Spectrum Health MTM Group which is a network of independent Medication Therapy Management (MTM) pharmacists providing comprehensive medication reviews and consultation services. He is also the founder of Health Records Resources which provides information, tools and support to help increase the awareness and utilization of personal health records (PHR's).

On his Linkedin profile Dave lists healthcare social media marketing as one of his specialties. He is probably the most followed pharmacist on Twitter and in January 2012 he was recognized as one of the Top 10 Healthcare Influencers to Follow on Twitter by Klutz. Dave has over 24,000 tweets and over 8,700 followers. He also manages the Linkedin group Community Clinical Pharmacist MTM Group for pharmacists who are interested in providing independent MTM consulting services independent of pharmacy dispensing activity. He also hosts a blog where he discusses many pharmacy and healthcare related topics.

Conclusion

These pharmacists are entrepreneurs. They have rejected the status quo and are plotting a different path. They are using their training, experience and social media to educate, share healthcare knowledge, advance healthcare, while building their businesses. This entrepreneurial spirit is what we need to move the pharmacy profession forward. Join, follow, like them, and most importantly start your own journey.

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