Main Article Content
The Digital revolution is set to influence medicine significantly in the coming days. Healthcare professionals should embrace the positive potential of social media (SM) and social networking sites (SNSs) and take advantage of these technologies and tools for their personal and professional development but also be aware of the potential impact of their online behaviors.Moorhead et al identified six arching domains of social media use by the general public, patients, and health professionals. These include Information provision and answering questions on various conditions; facilitation of dialogue between patients, and patients and healthcare professionals; data collection on patient experiences and opinions; SM use for health intervention;
health promotion and health education; reduction of stigma & online consultations (Moorhead et al., 2013). Social media has various advantages, such as reaching an extensive audience, low cost, peer/social/emotional support, helping students to keep updated the latest health trends, helping them to formally and informally learn the material, prompt communication & potential to influence health policy (Moorhead et al., 2013; Mostaghimi &Crotty, 2011). At the same time, there are various limitations of social media use in healthcare. These include lack of reliability, information overload, lack of confidentiality & privacy, risks associated with providing incorrect advice using social media, concerns about the correct application of online information to one’s personal health & adverse health consequences. Furthermore, in some cases, social media may restrict patients from visiting health professionals (Moorhead et al., 2013).