AMA Policies for Physicians Using Social Media

The American Medical Association (AMA) has been wary about the increasing popularity of social media amongst the medical community. It therefore came up with policies and guidance on social media conduct. These policies were approved in the AMA House of Delegates Interim Meeting. Some of the recommendations made by AMA:

  • Physicians must not post information that helps identify particular patients. This is to preserve the privacy and confidentiality of patients.
  • Physicians should use all available privacy settings and monitor their presence.
  • Physicians should consider having different personal and professional profiles on social media or anywhere online.
  • Physicians must monitor each others. For instance, if a physician notices that another physician post information that is unprofessional, it will be the duty of the physician to advice the person posting the content to remove or edit it.
  • Physicians must be aware that posting information online can affect their reputation in both positive and negative ways.

Overall, AMA has tried to put all the checks and balances in place to ensure that both the patient’s confidentiality and the doctor’s reputation are kept intact. However, with over 500 million users worldwide just on Facebook and the increasing popularity social media, without a doubt this will not be the last time AMA will speak out about social media.

For more information, visit American Medical News website.

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