AU MA Social Media

A class blog about social media.

Social media and hospitals

Posted by bn2954 on August 5, 2012

Last week a family member of mine was being cared for at an Inova hospital in northern Virginia. This led to the inspiration for my next blog post: use of social media by hospitals.

I would argue that every organization, brand or person has a need to communicate to a target audience. One could assume that for hospitals those target audiences range from patients and their families, to potential employees (medical students or doctors at other hospitals), the media, donors and potential patients (somebody who Googles their symptoms for medical information).

I was interested to see if Inova used social media. To say that they do is an understatement. They are using 12 outlets! They have CarePages, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest, blogs, Flickr, Foursquare, GooglePlus, Linkedin, Slideshare and Storify. They do a great job of explaining what each outlet is and linking directly to the official page. They also share their social media policy. I must admit I was a bit skeptical at first about the Pinterest page, but their categories like “healthy life” and “fitness” may be useful for former patients or caretakers and could raise awareness of the brand.

One of the Inova hospitals is ranked #1 in the D.C. area and #2 in Virginia. Is their social media use just another way they are setting the bar high?

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2 Responses to “Social media and hospitals”

  1. lmauti said

    I’m not so sure about a hospital being on pinterest…..but…I do love carepages. When my aunt was going through her 10 or so surgeries for breast cancer, this was the way that we could root her on in the hospital and also the way that we could be instantly notified of her surgery outcomes via her sisters. It’s a great way to keep patients connected to their families through tough times and even happy times.

    • bn2954 said

      I really like the idea of care pages, too. I think it is a great example of how technology improves our world. How meaningful for geographically distant family members to stay aware of what is going on with their loved one. I also think it relieves stress off of the family members who are expected to “constantly update” others of what is going on while they are taking care of somebody.

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