Thursday, 13 March 2014

Mix It Up.

Image taken from Google Images.
This week's Our Diabetes chat was incredibly busy, and I struggled to keep up and answer all the questions, but there were some great things being said! The chat was hosted by the We Nurses community and the topic was "working in partnership in online spaces". Here are my thoughts on what was discussed. 

Can we talk in this space?

I think we can. I hope we can! I personally like connecting with healthcare professionals (HCPs): I like to read about the problems they face in treating patients and how the NHS as a whole works. I like understanding why services are the way they are and why treatments are available in some areas of the country and not others.

What about HCP/patient confidentiality?

I understand that HCPs must have to be a lot more careful with what they say, where as patients can pretty much say what they like. But if patients are willing to openly share online, why shouldn't HCPs listen to what they're saying and learn from it?!

What is the future of social media and patient/nurse interaction?

I would love it if patients and nurses/HCPs in general could use social media to learn from each other. I think it's important to recognise that patients use social media for support: sharing experiences, connecting with people who understand, collaborating on ideas. Personally, I don't want social media becoming the place where I get healthcare advice: for that, I go to my endocrinologist, my DSN, my GP, but for emotional support I turn to the diabetes online community.

Should HCPs recommend groups like #ourd?

I think there's more to it than just recommending such communities. I think it's also important to promote "safe" online discussions, but, in short, YES! The way I see it, if HCPs are happy to reccommend offline support networks, why not online ones? At the end of the day, if people don't want to use them, they won't, but what's the harm in recommending them? For me, finding the diabetes online community has been integral to my emotional wellbeing, and when I meet people with diabetes, I tell them about it and what I've gained from it. 

I truly believe that HCPs and patients can learn from each other, and I think online communities provide a great space for us to do that. So let's keep the connections going and educating one another!

No comments:

Post a Comment