ers were more engaged in their care in areas such as providing appointment

Ers were more engaged in their care in areas such as

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ers were more engaged in their care in areas such as providing appointment reservations and reminders, reporting diagnostic results, sending prescription notifications, providing health infor- mation, and answering general questions. The authors also discussed the benefits of social media for the elderly; as the number of elderly patients using social media increases, more effort is needed to engage the elderly population. The authors discussed other benefits of social media such as the rapid dissemination of support and information and the engagement of patients as active partici- pants in their health, leading to a more educated consumer base. Because social media technologies are accessible, inexpensive, and easy to use, they can appeal to the vast majority of health consum- ers, which can improve patient engagement and empowerment. Finally, from the perspective of personal determinants of health, the authors remarked that social media can improve participation, autonomy, motivation, perceived self-efficacy, and trust for patients. Greene et al. also noted that by guest on December 23, 2015 Downloaded from
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54 Health Informatics Journal 20(1) Facebook can be used for building identity, emotional support, logistical support, and easy-to- access disease management information. In their literature review, Lober and Flowers focused on consumer empowerment in health- care in the context of the Internet and social media. The authors conducted a literature review, including technical reports, white papers, books, journal articles, and websites. 6 They reported that there are several benefits to the use of social media by patients, such as the ability to share their experiences, seek information and opinions, and engage with peers and providers. The authors also discussed the high accessibility and interactiveness of social media as reasons behind its rapid penetration into healthcare. Additionally, they examined the advent of the social media website Patients Like Me, which enables patients to exchange information on treatment options and symptoms. The authors noted that social media websites such as Patients Like Me will lead to improved disease self-management. Roblin 10 studied the potential use of mobile social networking healthcare 17–19 to aid in the sup- port of chronic disease self-management. The author conducted a pilot study in which social media programs enhanced by mobile devices were used to mediate communication between adults with type 2 diabetes and to motivate them to self-monitor their blood glucose levels. Because of its rela- tively good design, the participants found it easy to use. Some of the diabetic patients put more care into their self-monitoring and also observed improved emotional health as a result of the peer sup- port enabled by the social network.
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