20:44 PM

How Twitter Amplifies My Doctor and Human Voice

Medscape features an article written by HSS rheumatologist Karmela Kim Chan, MD, discussing the use of Twitter to amplify her voice as a physician and civilian.

“While I do use my Twitter account to learn from colleagues and to promote work that interests me, my primary aim is to participate in civil society as a person,” wrote Dr. Chan.

“Professionally, Twitter is rewarding. It is a space for networking and for promoting one's work. It is a fantastic learning format, as evidenced by the popularity of tweetorials,” she said. “But I find that I cannot separate who I am from what I do. As a rheumatologist, I build long-term relationships with patients. I cannot care for their medical conditions in isolation without also concerning myself with their nonmedical circumstances. For that reason, I have opinions that one might call humanist, and I suspect that I am not alone among rheumatologists,” she continued.

Dr. Chan noted three areas, broadly construed but with huge overlaps, that hold great concern for her which include things that affect all physicians (e.g., race and gender in the workplace; advancement of women in science and technology); things that affect rheumatologists particularly (e.g., access to medications and procedures, etc.); and issues that affect patients (e.g., health insurance being tied to employment, healthcare disparities, etc.) She concluded, “Critics will use "stay in your lane" as shorthand to say x professionals should stick to x (actors to acting, musicians to music, athletes to sports). If only I could. But my humanity won't let me.”

Read the full article at Medscape.com