How medical doctors and students should use Social Media: a review of the main guidelines for proposing practical recommendations

Stud Health Technol Inform. 2012;180:853-7.


Social Media has grown exponentially and in the last few years there has been an increasing use amongst medical doctors and students. There is intense debate about the complexities of ensuring medical professionalism in the digital age and especially on using open and massive online services. The objectives of this paper are: first, to gather the main recommendations on using Social Media platforms and websites by medical doctors and students, which are proposed by several international organizations, institutions and universities of reference and second, to propose a set of practical recommendations, based on the comparison of the statements and items of the guidelines, in order to find agreements and differences among them and select the most common and practical items stated. A Decalogue of good practices has been drawn up, pointing out the most important aspects that should be considered, highlighting the relevance of maintaining professional behavior in these environments, taking into account the advantages and drawbacks when using them.

MeSH terms

  • Internationality
  • Physicians / ethics*
  • Practice Guidelines as Topic*
  • Practice Patterns, Physicians' / ethics*
  • Practice Patterns, Physicians' / standards*
  • Social Media / ethics*
  • Social Media / standards*
  • Students*