Corporate Compliance

Teach physicians, staff proper social media protocol

Compliance Monitor, May 16, 2012

Navigating the new world of social media is challenging for many professionals, but perhaps none more so than the medical profession—physicians and other healthcare professionals must balance a tell-all online culture with the HIPAA Privacy Rule’s mandate to protect patient privacy.

With their ever-increasing popularity, social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter™ blur the lines between private and professional identities. Physicians must carefully consider their online lives and consider that navigating a public space can get them in trouble, say two Boston physicians.

Arash Mostaghimi, MD, MPA, and Bradley H. Crotty, MD, physicians at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, offered recommendations in “Ideas and Opinions: Professionalism in the Digital Age,” published April 19, 2011, in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

This article is adapted from an article that originally appeared in the April Briefings on HIPAA published by HCPro, Inc.