I’m going to give you my opinion first before the discussion begins and my opinion is that social media is great for healthcare. Why? It is a vehicle for bringing awareness to a topic.
My opinion is based on my perception of what social media does for society. I look at it as a microphone that amplifies someone’s voice. This can be used for good or bad. If social media is simply acting like an amplifier to someone’s voice than we have to have a conversation about who is listening. If you choose to consume content on social media about health, wellness and rehab than it is probably adding value to the industry, but if you are choosing to consumer content that is negative around the healthcare industry such as putting down certain professions, or demoralizing certain individuals than social media is negative for healthcare. For me the variable is simply who are you going to listen to and help amplify.
To analyze the question of social media being good or bad for healthcare we can also use the scenario of social media not existing. Would this create an environment where the health industry is only scene positively by consumers? No, we would still see negativity against certain professions on billboards, advertisements on park benches or magazines. The variable is still what you are choosing to consume which determines whether social media is being used for good or bad in any industry.
There are a lot of new platforms emerging such as Facebook Reels, YouTube Shorts, TikTok and LinkedIn, so I keep a positive mindset around what these platforms can do for healthcare and helping people. As long as we choose to consume and engage with positive content then that helps to amplify positivity of healthcare on these platforms.