Hospital social media activity mostly tied to maternity, recovery

But only 2 percent of posts are sent as thanks to hospital staff, HYP3R report on 6,000 hospitals finds.
By Tom Sullivan
11:26 AM
Hospital social media activity mostly tied to maternity, recovery

San Francisco-based startup HYP3R announced a new geosocial index that ranks some 6,000 hospitals based on social media activity.

Patients in hospitals, it turns out, tend to generate about as much social media content as people in a hotel with approximately the same number of beds. And what they reveal can be insightful to patient engagement and satisfaction efforts.

HYP3R found that 28 percent of social media posts pertain to maternity, 27 percent to friends and family, 17 percent is about recovery, 3 percent are celebratory in nature and 2 percent are sent as thanks to hospital staff.

“We all talk about patient engagement yet we are forgetting this key piece of patient engagement found in geosocial data,” HYP3R CEO Carlos Garcia said.

[Also: Tips for harnessing social media to improve population health]

Garcia added that even though almost everyone has a phone and uses it wherever they are, many hospitals think of social media activity as something that does not happen within their four walls.

“Here we have data showing that patients, family, and friends are on campus posting about their experiences, and they are not being engaged,” said Melody Smith Jones, director of strategy at HYP3R. “As social engagement is fostered, social activity grows and a health system’s ability to have their finger on the pulse of patient sentiment grows in turn.

Ultimately, we learn from the dynamics of this data by listening to all of these open letters patients are putting out into the world that are largely being ignored until now.”

The burning question, then, is which hospital reigns supreme, relative to social media activity and capacity?

HYP3R’s list is dynamic and, as such, can change every week but as of publication time Providence St. Joseph Medical Center in Burbank, California took the top spot, followed by Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, Henry Ford West Bloomfield, Children’s National Medical Center in Washington, DC and Children’s Medical Center Dallas.

Metropolitan hospitals, however, are not the only ones generating buzz on social media.

“Forrest General, in Southern Mississippi, actually has a comparable rank as compared to hospitals in more populated geographic areas like Los Angeles and Chicago,” Jones said. “While rural areas may have a lower population they are still vibrantly social.”

The Geosocial Index also ranks hotels, airports, theme parks and stadiums.

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Macon Community Hospital in Lafayette, Tennessee. (Credit: Macon Community Hospital)

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