Archive for the ‘Social networking’ Category
On September 14, 2012, the publication Government Health IT reported that HHS officials announced the release of MappyHealth, a new Web-based application tool available to public health officials. MappyHealth was the winning entry in a developers’ challenge competition, “Now Trending: #Health in My Community.” The challenge was sponsored by the HHS Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR). Health officials can use data gained through the app to complement other health surveillance systems, to identify emerging health issues and potential public health emergencies in a community.
Currently, the top diseases being tracked by MappyHealth are the common cold, sexually transmitted infections (STIs), mosquito borne disease, pertussis, tuberculosis, influenza and gastroenteritis. The top five locations for these disease-tracking tweets are São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Orlando, Chicago and Los Angeles. The availability of MappyHealth provides a mechanism for local public health departments to effectively utilize social media to monitor disease trends as they occur in real time.
NLM’s Facebook page was launched on February 16, 2010, with the initial goal of presenting lively, online health posts. The first listing was about a new exhibition opening: Within These Walls: Contraband Hospital and the African Americans Who Served There. By March 20, the NLM Facebook page had 1,000 followers. Two years later, there were 10,000. Today, NLM’s Facebook page has over 13,000 “likes” and grows by an average of about 14 new likes per day!
NLM’s Office of Communications and Public Liaison (OCPL) manages the NLM Facebook page, as well as NLM’s general-interest Twitter feed. Every week a team of four people, comprising the Facebook editorial group, gather for a thirty-minute discussion, that generates Facebook postings for the week. An example of potential content is a celebrity’s recent disease diagnosis. They also review a master list of annual health observances and recognition dates. The group chooses from a dozen or more listings for each month’s postings. The team then updates and responds to comments on NLM’s Facebook page. They have learned that with social media, the only constant is change, and they are constantly scanning the horizon for new content ideas!
U.S. Medicine is a publication serving healthcare professionals working in the Department of Veterans Affairs, Department of Defense and U.S. Public Health Service. It provides a mix of news, medical updates, interviews, reports on special government topics and monthly columns. In the recently published special issue, This Year in Federal Medicine – Outlook 2012, National Library of Medicine Director Dr. Donald A.B. Lindberg, MD, took the opportunity to acknowledge and celebrate NLM’s 175 years of public service, and to look ahead to 2012 and beyond. He began by reviewing the enormous amount of electronic information generated through resources such as PubMed and MedlinePlus. He also acknowledged the role of the National Network of Libraries of Medicine in promoting access to health information throughout the U.S., and the support and training that NLM provides in the areas of biomedical informatics and health information technology. Dr. Lindberg also addressed the emerging opportunities to link NLM’s health information resources with electronic health records. Even though Dr. Lindberg expects budgetary challenges for NLM in 2012 and beyond, his outlook for the future remains very positive, as he envisions that NLM’s range of services will continue to expand into new areas of biomedical research and health care.
Specific themes mentioned by Dr. Lindberg in his future outlook include the continuing growth of NLM resources, such as PubMed/MEDLINE, PubMed Central, and ClinicalTrials.gov. In addition, several new NLM resources will be released in 2012, including a Genetic Testing Registry and a database of clinical significant human genetic variants. Dr. Lindberg also expects the continued development of NLM resources related to disaster preparedness, and he noted the recent deployment of these resources in events such as the Gulf Oil Spill, and the earthquake and tsunami in Japan. Dr. Lindberg also expects that NLM will continue to utilize and expand the range of social media tools, mobile applications, and mobile versions of its resources to reach new and diverse audiences with high quality health information. He mentioned the impressive array of social media currently used by NLM, including 13 Twitter feeds, notably @medlineplus and the Spanish-language version @medlineplusesp, six Facebook pages and a new YouTube channel. The full text of Dr. Lindberg’s remarks is available on the U.S. Medicine web site.
Facebook is announcing a new service that harnesses the power of social networking and crisis support to help prevent suicides across the nation and Canada. The new service enables Facebook users to report a suicidal comment they see posted by a friend to Facebook using either the Report Suicidal Content link or the report links found throughout the site. The person who posted the suicidal comment will then immediately receive an e-mail from Facebook encouraging them to call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or to click on a link to begin a confidential chat session with a crisis worker.
The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or http://www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org/ is a toll-free suicide prevention hotline network comprised of 152 local crisis centers. The Lifeline is funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and administered by Link2Health Solutions, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Mental Health Association of New York City (MHA-NYC). The Lifeline provides free and confidential crisis counseling to anyone in need 24/7 and has answered over 3 million calls since its launch in 2005.
For more information about the partnership between Facebook, SAMHSA and the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, please visit the SAMHSA News Release and SAMHSA Blog.
The National Library of Medicine, the world’s largest medical library and a component of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), is pleased to announce the launch of its new YouTube channel! YouTube is a free video-sharing Web site, created in February 2005, on which users can upload, view and share videos. Unregistered users may watch videos, and registered users may upload an unlimited number of videos.
The NLM YouTube channel will post a variety of videos on topics from database training, NLM exhibitions (like an overview of the new Native Voices: Native Peoples’ Concepts of Health and Illness), Public Service Announcements, lectures and more. Interested parties can subscribe to be notified whenever new content is posted on the NLM channel. The NLM site also features links to NIH YouTube channels and other federal health resources.
The National Library of Medicine makes use of several social media tools to share news and resources. One of the latest tools developed at NLM is the NLM_DIMRC twitter feed. Be sure to start following @NLM_DIMRC http://twitter.com/#!/NLM_DIMRC and share with your colleagues. This will allow you to keep up on a daily basis with news bytes on disaster medicine and public health! If you are looking for a more in-depth review of items, consider subscribing to the DISASTR-OUTREACH-LIB listserv. You can also see a complete list of NLM social media tools.
Health DATAbytes is an online conversation featuring health experts and advocates providing examples of using data to make healthy changes to benefit communities and address health disparities. The blog postings are designed to help people with a wide range of data expertise to better understand and use data to seek funding, plan and evaluate programs, or advance public policies to promote healthier communities. In addition to the expert commentary, Health DATAbytes provides data tips and tricks, and links to upcoming data training sessions. Blog postings reflect a broad range of health topics. Recent listings include the health effects of living near major roadways, neighborhoods lacking healthy food outlets (food deserts), and the effect of state budget cuts on support services for the elderly and disabled.
Health DATAbytes is a new initiative from the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research, as part of its Health DATA (Data. Advocacy. Training. Assistance.) Program. The aim of this program is to make data easily understandable to a wide variety of public health and health advocacy personnel, as well as members of the general community. Another goal of the program is to increase capacity of these groups to locate and present credible data related to particular health programs.
Google Realtime Search allows you to keep up with developments as they happen from Twitter, Facebook, and blogs around the web. Go to http://www.google.com/realtime and conduct a search on a topic of interest. The results will appear on a constantly refreshing screen so you can see new updates as they happen. You can also access Realtime by clicking “More” from the regular Google menu.
Hopefully you have had an opportunity to visit the newly redesigned Healthy People 2020 web site since its official unveiling on December 2, 2010. The site includes several mechanisms for you to stay informed and participate as the Healthy People 2020 objectives are rolled out. Subscribe to Healthy People E-Mail Updates to receive the Monthly e-Bulletin or the periodic News You Can Use, featuring new tools, events, and resources to help you implement the initiative.
Connect with Healthy People on LinkedIn to find other professionals implementing the initiative, in order to network and share your ideas. To stay current with the latest information, follow Healthy People on Twitter; @GoHealthyPeople. And finally, join the Healthy People Consortium, a diverse and motivated group of agencies and organizations committed to achieving the goals and objectives of Healthy People 2020.
The Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project reports on Twitter users. According to the report, 8% percent of the American adults who use the internet are Twitter users. Some of the groups who are notable for their relatively high levels of Twitter use include young adults, African-Americans and Latinos, and urbanites. See the full report at http://www.pewinternet.org/Reports/2010/Twitter-Update-2010.aspx.