When Medicine Is Becoming Collaborative: Social Networking Among Health-Care Professionals
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In recent years, Wikis, blogs, microblogs, and other social networking platforms have become available to health care professionals facilitating information sharing and interprofessional collaboration. Online health-care provider communities act as “apomediaries” helping users seek, filter, and select relevant information. Interactions with professional peers on these platforms also provide opportunities for sharing, creating, and applying knowledge within their scope of practice. This chapter examines the use of web-based collaborative applications and social networking platforms by health professionals. Specifically, we outline the potential impacts on professional development, collaboration among health-care professionals, professional mentoring and support, and patient outcomes. We identify ways to address use barriers and outline potentials in fostering health-care professionals’ participation and engagement and conclude with future research directions.
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