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Social Media Use Among Members of the Assessment of Spondyloarthritis International Society: Results of a Web-Based Survey

HumanInsight Social Media Use Among Members of the Assessment of Spondyloarthritis International Society: Results of a Web-Based Survey

J Med Internet Res. 2023 Jan 10;25:e39155. doi: 10.2196/39155.


BACKGROUND: The use of social media in health care may serve as a beneficial tool for education, information dissemination, telemedicine, research, networking, and communications. To better leverage the benefits of social media, it is imperative to understand the patterns of its use and potential barriers to its implementation in health care. A previous study in 2016 that investigated social media use among young clinical rheumatologists (≤45 years) and basic scientists showed that there was substantial social media use among them for social and professional reasons. However, there is a limited inquiry into social media use in different areas of rheumatology, such as spondyloarthritis.

OBJECTIVE: We aimed to explore the motivations, barriers, and patterns of social media use among an international group of experts in spondyloarthritis.

METHODS: We distributed a web-based survey via email from March 2021 to June 2021 to 198 members of the Assessment of Spondyloarthritis International Society. It contained 24 questions about demographic characteristics, patterns of current social media use, and perceptions of utility. Univariable and multivariable logistic regression analyses were performed to identify the characteristics associated with use trends.

RESULTS: The response rate was 78.8% (156/198). Of these, 93.6% (146/156) of participants used at least one social media platform. Apart from internet-based shopping and entertainment, the use of social media for clinical updates (odds ratio [OR] 6.25, 95% CI 2.43-16.03) and research updates (OR 3.45, 95% CI 1.35-8.78) were associated with higher social media consumption. Among the respondents, 66% (103/156) used social media in a work-related manner. The use of social media for new web-based resources (OR 6.55, 95% CI 2.01-21.37), interaction with international colleagues (OR 4.66, 95% CI 1.21-17.90), and establishing a web-based presence (OR 4.05, 95% CI 1.25-13.13) were associated with higher levels of consumption for work-related purposes. Time investment, confidentiality concerns, and security concerns were the top 3 challenges to a wider adoption of social media.

CONCLUSIONS: Most respondents (103/156, 66%) use social media in a work-related manner. Professional development, establishing a web-based presence, and international collaboration were associated with higher use. Challenges to social media adoption should be addressed to maximize its benefits.

PMID:36626201 | DOI:10.2196/39155

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