"In response to several comments from colleagues regarding my role on this blog. We have sought guidance from the British Medical Association who make the following points in their document on 'Using social media: practical and ethical guidance for doctors and medical students'."
- Social media can blur the boundary between an individual’s public and professional lives
- Doctors and medical students should consider adopting conservative privacy settings where these are available but be aware that not all information can be protected on the web
- The ethical and legal duty to protect patient confidentiality applies equally on the internet as to
- other media
- It would be inappropriate to post informal, personal or derogatory comments about patients or colleagues on public internet forums
- Doctors and medical students who post online have an ethical obligation to declare any conflicts of interest
- The BMA recommends that doctors and medical students should not accept Facebook friend requests from current or former patients
- Defamation law can apply to any comments posted on the web made in either a personal or professional capacity
- Doctors and medical students should be conscious of their online image and how it may impact on their professional standing
"If you think we are in breach of any of these key guidelines please let me know. Thank you!"