Tip of the Month
Social Media Etiquette
The current impact of social media on the health-care professions is undoubtedly great. It provides a forum for audiologists to connect to share information and support each other. Social media ties a small professional community together. It reaches audiologists wherever they are, in the United States or overseas, a small private practice or large medical institution, first-year student to very experienced practitioners. We have similar situations and stories that can be comical to share only with people in the field. It is important for audiologists to understand our responsibility on social media to our patients, each other and the profession.
Our first and greatest responsibility is to our patients. We need to protect the confidentiality of each person we serve. Pictures of patients, hearing aids with serial numbers, even personal stories should be considered identifying information. We must protect the audiologist/patient relationship. Stories told to us in confidence as a health-care provider are not ours to share on a public forum. We also need to ensure that we are supportive to each other. Interactions between audiologists should be positive and helpful and aimed at developing the audiologist or the profession. Please remember, even though these groups may be closed, it is impossible to know who can access the information. Patients, employers, and future referral sources may look at this information. Make sure to represent yourself and the profession of audiology in a positive way.