Background Social networking through online media has greatly increased among a variety of disciplines, changing the way many people receive or seek information about health issues and health care. With this in mind, pharmacist involvement in social communities may have the potential to be highly beneficial.
Purpose To analyse the impact of a hospital pharmacy Facebook (HPF) profile created to promote drug safety and disseminate health-related information and describe the kind of information published and the benefits provided to users.
Materials and methods The HPF profile was created in February 2013 by hospital pharmacists. Data was collected until September 2013 from the Facebook analytical and statistical tool. Data collected: follower profile (sex, age and nationality), updated information (UI), divided into four types (A-latest news, B-patient safety, C-restriction of use and distribution of drugs reports and D-patient consultant).
Results Followers: 77 (64% women, 68% under 34), from 8 different countries. Facebook updates: 40. The UI was A:37.5%, B: 35%, C: 17.5% and D:10%. The most shared (86 shares), the most commented (5 comments) and the most ‘liked’ (35 ‘likes’) UI was related to B and the most popular (1194 visits) was related to C. The most shared (84 shares) and the most ‘liked’ (10 ‘likes’) post was a patient safety and patient knowledge in pharmacovigilance questionnaire (UI type A). The most commented post was a safety alert on birth control pill. The most popular post (442 visits) was related to Tetrazepam market withdrawal (UI type C).
Conclusions HPF followers have been increasing since the profile creation. The most relevant information for our users was related to patient safety. We must concentrate on promoting an open dialogue between patients and pharmacists to take full advantage of the communication channels provided by social networks. Hospital pharmacists can play an important role in providing safe and accurate drug-related information.
No conflict of interest.
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