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(How to) listen to the buzz! The pros and cons of our new reality

Comment by Maria Simonenko, Secondary Prevention and Rehabilitation Section

Preventive Cardiology
Rehabilitation and Sports Cardiology

The year 2020 was a challenge in every way, from education to health management. In many areas, we could not rely on pre-existing protocols. Healthcare specialists used all their knowledge and did not stop learning from others' experience to find the best solution in patient management. During the last year, recommendations and medical societies' guidance updated about once every month and in this non-stop working schedule healthcare specialists tried not to miss any updates or grains of knowledge. Libraries, onsite lectures and meetings transformed into webinars, emails and tweets. Face-to-face patient consultations became telemedicine sessions where it was possible to provide patients the safest support in these conditions. It is hard to imagine how slow it would go without social media support. While praising the importance and benefits of social media, we should acknowledge the fact that rumors or one person’s opinion, not verified and not supported by local national healthcare system recommendations, can be harmful.

It is great that Dr. C. Krittanawong highlighted both the benefits and limitations of social media and TeleHealth [1]. His article is not the first one promoting the use of social media in medicine [2,3,4] but also importantly shows the pros and cons of our new reality.

In 2020, not only did daily life change, so did healthcare - turning into a hybrid of work and education with huge support for healthcare professionals via digital platforms.


Maria Simonkeno commented on this article:

1. Chayakrit Krittanawong - TeleHealth in the digital revolution era, European Heart Journal, 2021; 42(21): 2033–2035 doi: 10.1093/eurheartj/ehaa1019

other references:

2. Dean Giustini, et al. - Effective uses of social media in public health and medicine: a systematic review of systematic reviews, Online J Public Health Inform, 2018; 10(2): e215 doi: 10.5210/ojphi.v10i2.8270 
3. Amy K Saenger, et al. - The Power of Social Media in Medicine and Medical Education: Opportunities, Risks, and Rewards, Clinical Chemistry, 2018; 64(9), 1284-1290 DOI: 10.1373/clinchem.2018.288225
4. Gene LeBarge, at al. – Social Media in Primary Care, Mo Med, 2019; 116(2): 106-110

Notes to editor

Note: The content of this article reflects the personal opinion of the author/s and is not necessarily the official position of the European Society of Cardiology.