About the author:

Howard J. Luks, MD

Howard J. Luks, MD

A Board Certified Orthopedic Surgeon in Hawthorne, NY. Dr. Howard Luks specializes in the treatment of the shoulder, knee, elbow, and ankle. He has a very "social" patient centric approach and believes that the more you understand about your issue, the more informed your decisions will be. Ultimately your treatments and his recommendations will be based on proper communications, proper understanding, and shared decision-making principles – all geared to improve your quality of life.

10 comments on “The Real Reason Some Doctors Fear Social Media

  • Actually, there are a lot of physicians that should fear social media exactly for the reason you mentioned, that being that some of them are jerks. The problem with many businesses is that they don’t get into social media which means their consumers get to talk about them. We all know that if things are bad the word gets spread to more people and faster as well. Physicians might want to bury their head in the sand because they know they’re deficient in some manner, and then they get what they deserve.

    However, all medical entities should find a way to turn the corner, embrace social media, and who knows, it may teach them a few things about treating patients with more respect at the same time. If it’s a lesson real life can’t teach them, maybe social media can. :-)

    • Social media (in medicine and healthcare) will reach the point where it levels the playing field in many ways. It will enable, and educate patients in ways never before possible — and it will teach those physicians offices who are behaving “badly” that the velocity of information transfer —can truly bring an end to the diva paradox.

      I find it interesting that most doctors fear what a patient may or may not say on a site about them — versus fearing that their competitors become socially savvy and serve the needs of their catchment base long before it ever appears on their radar screen.

      Oh well… moving on! Have a nice weekend Mitch — thanks once again for stopping by!
      hjl

  • People who don’t like engaging with people IRL won’t suddenly like it on Twitter. I am always concerned that the reticence of some doctors reflects general dissatisfaction with their work. Until they’re happy with their ‘day job’ they’re unlikely to be happy talking about it and sharing.

    • Thanks for stopping by Bryan… I agree that it may reflect an overall dissatisfaction with their job — however, reaching out and educating a thirsty global audience might give a few docs exactly what they are looking for to make them “happy”. Otherwise, the point I was trying to make was simply that social media will level the playing field by enabling patients to know that there are other experts around … and those specialists may be more “social” or at the very least, offer a more patient centric, well grounded #patientexperience.
      thanks again
      howard

  • Insightful piece of work, especially Godin’s quote “Uncaring hands are worth avoiding.”
    Social media platforms ‘humanize’ doctors, make them more approachable and less like demi-gods who know it all and hold the key to all healing in their hands. ‘Digital Doctors’ (as they are fondly being called now) interact with patients, share thoughts, hear thoughts, and even learn from patients, etc. A doctor’s online presence becomes his ‘brand.’ E.g. A funny doctor exudes humor in his online presence, attracting patients through this, and building a rapport with them. This is a great thing. However, some doctors might fear losing that secrecy and ‘authority’ (albeit on a subconscious level) they hold over patients when social media suddenly makes them normal human beings just like everyone.

    • Thank you… They can only hold out for so long. My own daughter will not buy an app on the App store unless is has 5 stars and she is only 6 :-) As patients become more web savvy they will learn to find the physician who is will be to open in terms of transparency and communications… Establishing a “humanizing” web presence is simply the first step — if executed properly.
      Thanks again
      Howard Luks

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