Hospitals harness social media

Jackie Fox writes in the Omaha World-Herald about local institutions’ use of social media to reach out to consumers and to provide information in the formats and locations in which consumers are likely to look.

One institution views social media as a customer service, providing patients with blogs they can use to share health updates with family and friends. Some find and reply to relevant blog posts or tweets.

Others, such as the Nebraska Medical Center, post videos on YouTube of treatments or procedures.

“It’s a good educational tool for procedures people may not be familiar with. People may decide this is someone they’d like an appointment with, or doctors in other parts of the state learn they can send patients to a specialist closer to home,” [media relations lead Paul ]Baltes said.

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