Social media marketing and health care: Is the reward worth the risk?

social media marketing and the health care industry

Social media has drastically changed the way the public communicates with various organizations. People can easily interact with others and share their opinions across a multitude of platforms.

Big-name brands and agencies have been part of these crucial conversations for years, but numerous health care provider agencies have held off. Why?


A Big Risk: Violating privacy


Although there are myriad of benefits for companies that actively participate in social media, most of them do not need to worry about violating patient confidentiality. Health care providers, on the other hand, are governed by The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), which protects patients and their health information.

For example, if someone posts on a health care provider’s Facebook that a friend has a mental illness and discloses their name and condition, that friend’s confidentiality has been violated. To address these issues, it is crucial for providers to have a social media policy that clearly states the organization’s response to posts that violate HIPAA.

Even though health care organizations need to be very careful about HIPAA and privacy, social media is definitely a necessary tool for any marketing plan.


Say ‘Yes!’ to Social Media: Working with HIPAA


Due to HIPAA, many health care organizations are not sure how to start building their social presence. To address all risk, it is important to create a marketing plan and policy that address how your organization will conform with HIPAA law. These policies must be reviewed by a lawyer to protect both the organization and any patients.


OK, now what?


After you review and establish policies, it is time to discuss strategy! What are your goals? How many social media sites should you be active on? Which social media sites are best for your organization? What organizations should you follow?

These can be tough questions to answer.

We can help!


GREENCREST specializes in marketing strategies and social media marketing, as well as content marketing. We can help your organization navigate social media and create a solid strategy. Speak with a social media marketing expert today!