Thursday, November 15, 2012

Day 15: Medical companies should use social media #NHBPM

There has been a lot of talk lately in the social media world about the frustrations surrounding the fact that a lot of medical companies aren't really on social media. From one perspective, it does make sense. Having some site where people can have unmonitored interaction or to lambaste you freely could leave the potential for a lot of problems.

From the position of us patients though, it really would do a lot of good.

One of the best things about having an online community with people who have taken similar meds or gone through negative reactions is that you can get advice on how to handle issues that arise from meds to exercises to many other things. Wouldn't it be nice to be able to contact the manufacturers of a medication when you have an issue?

Many companies have ways to contact them, like a support line. The problem with that is that, even with registered nurses answering the phone, they all just tell you still to contact your doctor. Obviously, there are reasons for that and it's understandable but it seems that there is really no recourse, no way to contact the company back to let them know what the real issue was - if it really was the med or an interaction or something else. With social media, that could be somewhat fixed.

Facebook pages allow you to review companies and their products as well as just popping in to say hi or whatever. Couldn't there be a similar form to fill out for negative medication reactions? That way others can see and know about the possibilities - and how to handle that situation - and the company could be made aware of it too.

In this day and age, social media is so key to many businesses. It is the main 'word of mouth' now and companies need to get with the times. I think each company needs a dedicated social media person to handle these issues and best think on how to respond, to record issues, and to follow up with clients. It won't take away me going to my friends first/concurrently but it will alert companies to issues they may otherwise not know - and that information could help doctors figure out why people all the sudden start back spasms the same time as starting a new drug or other reactions. It could really change lives.

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