Measuring Hospital Quality with Social Media

After seeing all the talk at last week’s HIMSS (Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society) conference about data, I paid particular attention to a study my colleague found last month from the American Journal of Medical Quality (via iHealthBeat).

The study shows a correlation between Facebook ‘likes’ and patient recommendations as well as declines in 30-day mortality rates.

Granted, the ‘hospital quality via Facebook’ study only looked at 40 hospitals, all in New York City, so it might be hard to generalize much from the correlations, but the more important point is (as the authors said) that “free, widely accessible data made available via social media will continue to find a place in academic assessment of hospital quality.”

Not only will social media data be important in academic assessments: To quote National Coordinator for Health IT Farzad Mostashari from the HIMSS conference, “Your ability to manage information is going to be part of doing business.” [Emphasis added.]

As the AJMQ study suggests, some useful healthcare business information might come from a social networking medium like Facebook. Indeed, Fathom’s upcoming webinar on Thursday is about social media for business planning: “Using Social Media Data To Drive Real Business Results.”

There is still time to register, and the information covered will apply to both healthcare and non-healthcare organizations, as well as B2B and B2C businesses.

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Photo courtesy of owenwbrown via Flickr.

About Paul Richlovsky

Paul purposefully merges a creative writing and teaching background with his decade-long marketing career. He advises clients on content strategy, editorial direction and PR/distribution. He is a perpetual critical thinker who has written/edited hundreds of blog posts and multiple long-form marketing guides, including those aimed at audiences as varied as healthcare, higher education, financial services, B2C brands and manufacturing. With a BA in English from the College of Wooster, he is also the author of a collection of poetry, "Under the Lunar Neon."He gets really excited about the science of elite performance, usability, brand voice, headlines, digital governance, ballroom dancing, bachata, racquet sports, and romping with his niece and nephews.

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