Posted in #HCSM, social spotlight

Social Spotlight: Professor Brian Dolan

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This week it was my great pleasure to catch up with fellow Irish man and global citizen, Brian Dolan.  A director of Health Service 360, Brian has a career that spans more than 30 years working as a nurse and nursing leader with a background in both acute mental health and emergency nursing.

Hi Brian, I am keen to learn more about the role social media plays in your work. Has it led to any exciting projects? 

BD: For some years now I’ve been talking about the last 1,000 days – the time left if you’re an 80-year-old woman whose life expectancy is 83 years or 76-year-old man whose life expectancy is 79 years – and why patient time is the most important currency in healthcare. In July my blog on this topic was published by @FabNHSStuff and curated by the wonderful @PeteGordon68 and @ECISTNetwork. It seems to have taken on a life of its own through twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook and will now the subject of my next book, ‘The Last 1,000 Days’. Thank you social media!

That’s really exciting Brian! So when did you start using social media. What prompted you to get started?

BD: I started using Facebook 7-8 years ago mainly for staying in touch with family and friends, as I work and live in New Zealand and the UK, as well as having extensive travel to Australia. With cousins in California it means I can chat with loved ones up to 19 time zones away!

I think that’s certainly true of many of us – we are led into social media for personal reasons, but then we discover a whole other side to it. Professionally, which platform do you enjoy using the most?

BD:  While Facebook has been wonderful for reconnecting with friends and family from childhood and beyond, I really enjoy Twitter as the single best source of Continuing Professional Development I’ve known in my career. I also love that you can create personal connections with so many eclectic, interesting and generous folk – like yourself Marie! – whom one might not otherwise meet.

I agree! Meeting like-minded people has been one of the most rewarding aspects of social media for me too. Which topics interest you? Do you take part in any particular twitter chats?

BD:  While unsurprisingly nursing is my main interest, quality and service improvement, all things Irish and PhD research are also places I live on twitter. Time zone constraints mean I don’t get to enjoy as many twitter chats as I would like but I like to catch up via their hashtags.

What advice would you give someone just starting out on social media?

BD: Twitter is not just about Kardashians and the waters of healthcare Twitter are warm, kind and generous, so jump right in. Always be your best self on social media and don’t be tempted to feed the trolls!

Great advice! Finally, would you like to share a favourite quote with us?

No matter how educated, talented, rich or cool you believe you are, how you treat people tells everything. Integrity is everything.

Thanks so much Brian for taking the time to share with us your experience of using social media in your work.  It’s been a pleasure to get to know you better through this interview and I look forward to hearing more about your new book when it’s published.


Read: The last 1,000 days: What happens when patient time becomes the most important currency in healthcare #last1000days

Follow Brian on Twitter @BrianwDolan

 

 

Posted in #HCSM, social spotlight

Social Spotlight: Dr Ollie Minton

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This week I am shining my social spotlight on Macmillan consultant, and honorary senior lecturer in palliative medicine at St. George’s University of London, Dr Ollie Minton.

Hi Ollie, I’m eager to learn more about how you are using social media in your work?

OM: As the saying goes no one reads your work except the reviewers and editor so sharing my interests and publications has gone a long way. I also think sharing articles and other things of interest is the best use of social media and by that I mean Twitter. I think some gentle campaigning such as Dying Matters and You Only Die Once (#yodo) pays dividends.

The more you make the connections, the more it pays off

We were able to promote our team at work and the  trust to a huge audience – you can’t buy that publicity – and demystify what we do. The rest is simply serendipity, but the more you make the connections, the more it pays off – I think for instance more of my work has been read since I tweeted links in the last year than ever before. I have enjoyed following and being followed by a wide cross-section of medical types and interest groups.

When did you start using social media. What prompted you to get started?

OM: I started during my PhD in earnest – feeling like a fish out of water – a clinician in the lab and the time any experiment took. I have then seen the proliferation of open data and access and feel that work both old and new can be shared equally. I also wanted to broaden my reading beyond my speciality and medicine to a degree.

Which platform(s) do you enjoy using the most?

OM:  Really for me Twitter offers it all and links take me to wherever I need to go. There is some mythical ratio of professional to personal interactions of either 80:20 or 70:30; and for the most part I think I stick to that. The only recent addition I have made is to write a few blogs – prompted by Twitter friends and m’learned colleague and friend Dr Mark Taubert who is also the associate editor of the BMJ Supportive and Palliative Care blog, so there’s a natural outlet and obviously you can then tweet the link to what you’ve written.

Which topics interest you; do you take part in any particular twitter chats?

OM: I’d hope I took the early lesson from the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) and hide in plain sight, with my interests, both clinical and academic, made explicit. I am interested in supportive and palliative care very broadly, which can encompass all aspects of health. I would focus on cancer care in particular, and long term effects of successful treatment. I take part in the relevant Twitter chats as a result – palliative medicine and radiation oncology journal clubs when the time difference internationally allow, and I do enjoy the debates in the @WeDocs chats both formal and impromptu.

What advice would you give someone just starting out on social media?

OM: Don’t agonise too much – create a profile that allows a personality to come through – photo and bio obviously straight away and jump in.  As I said we docs are very community focused.

The only decent set of “rules” I ever read were by the UK civil service

It’s not rocket science – we must use common sense about everything we publish on digital and social media. Once something has been sent, it’s public. Following these guidelines correctly will ensure that your social media activity will enhance your job as a civil servant, while also retaining the highest levels of integrity.

Or the ASCO – no one is anonymous online and hide in plain sight.

Finally, would you like to share a favourite quote with us? 

OM: I’d cheat and recommend the 42 Douglas Adams quotes to live by from the recent radio 4 revival. But out of all of them, I’d choose:  ” All opinions are not equal. Some are a very great deal more robust, sophisticated and well supported in logic and argument than others. The secular update of In God We Trust all others must bring data” (attributed to W Edwards Deming).

I really enjoyed learning more about your work and philosophy Ollie. I look forward to learning more from you on Twitter.  Thanks! 

Follow Ollie on Twitter @drol007

 

 

Posted in #HCSM

Social Spotlight: James Legan MD

 

This week it’s my great pleasure to catch up with James Legan, MD, an Internal Medicine Physician, now in his 23rd year in Private Practice in Great Falls, Montana, USA.  James blogs regularly about patient care and technology, and was an early adopter of live video streaming platforms Periscope and Blab.  A talented painter, James is also one of the friendliest, kindest and most welcoming persons I have met online.

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Hi James, I know you have a passion for combining technology with patient care, could you begin by sharing an example of how you do this. 

JL:  My passion has been sharing my experience with #ProjectedEHR, an approach that I have been using for the past two and a half years at the point of care with my patients.  I use a wall mounted 24 inch screen in each exam room and as I walk in and greet the patient, hook the 14″ Acer Chromebook via HDMI cord to the large screen.  Instantaneously the patient and I can look at their own data/information contained in their electronic record.  I have had such a positive response with my own patients, I share this approach whenever I can get the chance.

When did you start using social media. What prompted you to get started?

JL:  About 2 years ago I started with Twitter, which has been the “nest” for my Social Media Platform with links to my Periscope, Blab and WordPress sites. Desiring to share #ProjectedEHR as a way to give back to the Profession, with the intention of hopefully helping others in the medical arena is what got me started.

Which platform(s) do you enjoy using the most?

JL:  I think all the platforms are a bit different and reach different followers, some merge, some separate.  I like to blog for disseminating things learned along the way. I like Periscope to share fun things primarily, mostly on the weekends.  Blab is a great way to brainstorm in small groups, and the next best thing to being together IRL (in real life) and better because of the connections world wide.  So I like all of the platforms and don’t have any particular favorite, just mix it up depending on how I want to connect and with whom.

Which topics interest you – eg do you take part in any particular twitter chats?

JL:  I particularly like topics regarding technology and patient engagement, and #HealthXPH, #HITsm #IrishMed and #HCLDR are twitter chats I have been most involved with

What advice would you give someone just starting out on social media?

JL:  Don’t share anything you would not if printed on the front of your local newspaper, and have fun.  Read Marie Ennis-O’Connor’s rules of social media, and don’t break them. 😉

Finally, would you like to share a favourite quote with us?

JL:  “Listen to your patient, he is telling you the diagnosis,” from Sir William Osler.

Thanks James for taking the time to share with us your experience of using social media in your work. Your commitment to patient care shines through in everything you do. 

Follow James on Twitter @jimmie_vanagon

 

Posted in #HCSM

Social Spotlight: Dr Richard Brady

 

This week I caught up with Dr Richard Brady, advanced intestinal failure / abdominal wall reconstruction Fellow and owner of website and app development company Research Active, to find out more about the role social media plays in his work.

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Hi Richard, I’m a keen follower of you on Twitter and I’m curious to know when did you start using social media?

RB: Strangely, although never really actually meaning to be, I’ve always found myself an early adopter and a “techie”. For me, social media is an obvious, rapid means to engage in global communication, keep up with events and developments within my interests and help to level the traditionally conservative hierarchical and cultural barriers to open and free information.

Very early on, I found that social media was remarkably absent of such barriers. There was a general willingness to learn, engage, support, grow and communicate by everyone, from medical student to professor. I was also really interested in the dynamics of this game-changing technology on the interactions and behaviours of surgical communities.

Since then, I have been performing research in the field, managing a range of social media accounts for medical businesses, giving advice and consultancy, and speaking regularly at conferences. It has certainly opened up a world of interest, fascination and opportunity for me.

I agree with you that social media breaks down traditional barriers. It’s one of the things that I have found most empowering about social media. Can you think back to what initially prompted your interest in social media?

RB: Twitter has opened so many personal opportunities for me, from job offers, to research, to consultancy, to invitations to speak at conferences and many, many more. I guess I’m keen, given so very many good things are happening out there, that other trainees and surgeons can experience the world of opportunity. I also think that the medium is a massive leveler; with open, free communication, no pay-walls, transparency, making distance an irrelevance and providing unedited, immediate and concise information. It transcends economics, background and borders, and with instant translators, language is no longer a barrier. It has the potential to connect surgery, speed up adoption of new techniques and disseminate good practice, like no other technology in history. The next 10 years will be an exciting time in surgical education.

Your enthusiasm for the future is infectious Richard! I’m curious to know of any projects you are currently involved with that leverage social media?

RB: I initially experimented with a LinkedIn group amongst surgical trainees. This was generally well supported but it was an eye-opener, resulting in a diversity of social media behaviours within a very focused user group of trainee surgeons, all of similar age and grade. From those who avidly shared far too much, to the deafening and inhibitory presence of silent lurkers, to the ultra-conservatives who refused to even join, warning others the sky would fall in! It was a good and early experience, but in retrospect, it was perhaps slightly ahead of its time and the cultural curve which existed then but it served as a useful experience.

Since then, as more medics have become comfortable with social media, Twitter has become an amazing medium for highlighting and sharing high quality information quickly and efficiently. Those who have engaged with this platform have gained access to the immediate and intimate opinions of experts, news and developments from the best centres, societies and associations, and I have been struck by the frequency by which these interactions have forged friendships, projects and collaborations in the real world.

I’ve also undertaken and written a number of studies in which we have investigated contemporary social media usage in specific specialties, including colorectal, vascular, and hernia surgery, and others which are due to be published. Recently, social media has been the link within a number of projects I am involved in, where Twitter is used as the medium of choice between massive numbers of collaborators.

Just 12 weeks ago, a number of colorectal surgeons formed an informal campaign to assist those with an interest in finding information relevant to the specialty, by using the hashtag “#colorectalsurgery” in Twitter posts related to this subject. After lots of word of mouth and following a collaborative multimedia video campaign to encourage more understanding, we have gathered more than 20 million impressions/views on over 6000 tweets, involving nearly 1000 different people on the #colorectalsurgery hashtag.

Whilst acknowledging that social media is clearly not for anyone, the next stage is to encourage those who are “offline” and haven’t quite realised its potential, with an education campaign through traditional means and surgical associations. Indeed, many associations have shown interest in getting involved.

It’s really interesting to hear about how you are using Twitter as a collaboration tool. Of all the many social platforms out there, which do you enjoy using the most?

RB: Undoubtedly Twitter – conversation is focused (in its 140 character limits) and by its nature is less formal, easy to understand and highly collaborative. It also has its own particular brand of humour and culture – some of which takes a little getting used to.

Twitter is my favourite too. I see it as THE place for  healthcare conversations. Which topics particularly interest you?  Do you take part in any specific twitter chats?

RB: I have a keen interest in medical technology and mobile apps and have spoken widely on regulation and potential dangers within this field. There are often mobile health chats that are very interesting to engage with. In colorectal surgery there are a series of professional “Twitter chats” planned in the coming year and I look forward to either being involved or watching their progress. The key will be to provide a supportive atmosphere and encourage a diverse and enthusiastic engagement and conversation.

I know you are keen to get more healthcare professionals involved in social media. What advice would you give someone just starting out on social media?

Don’t expect results immediately, and have patience – it takes time to learn the language and culture of social media and build strong connections. I also really like the 12 words of advice from Farris Timimi MD, the medical director for the Mayo Clinic Center For Social Media, “Don’t lie, don’t pry, don’t cheat, can’t delete, don’t steal, don’t reveal”. Stay true to this and you will rarely go wrong.

Finally, would you like to share a favourite quote with us?

A favourite and one I think is relevant here, attributed to Grace Murray Hopper is

The most dangerous phrase in the language is “we’ve always done it this way!”

I think this applies equally to surgery, the NHS, and innovators everywhere.

Thanks Richard for taking the time to share so generously with us your thoughts on using social media in your work. It’s been illuminating and inspiring. 

Follow Richard on Twitter @researchactive