Of the seven recommendations of using social media responsibility, I found # 2 and #4 the most thought provoking.
#2 “Don’t post, blog, tweet or comment about individual clients or your workplace.” I had no issue with not using social media to discuss clients but I initially thought it was okay to discuss work. The extent of my posts about work on social media are similar to “I had a hard day or I am exhausted after a hard day”. It wasn’t until I read the “Fasebook Misfire-case study” on the crnbc.ca website, that I reconsidered my position on the subject. The article implies that it is possible to accidently breach patient confidentiality via social media. The key points of the case study were: 1) Nurse worked on a resident care unit
2) Nurse posted online “so much for being patient and listening-some people apparently just don’t want to hear- maybe dementia is hereditary?”
The discussion about the case study suggests that “dementia” is a clue about a client and can be used to narrow the list of possible clients the nurse was taking about. Also, on a social media sight like facebook, the nurses workplace might be listed, providing another clue to the patient’s identity. And finally, a co-worker could comment on the nurse’s post, such as, are you taking about (client’s name).
I still feel it is inappropriate to post about a client for any reason. Even if you could guarantee confidentiality, I still feel like it is an abuse of power. In a nurse client relationship, the balance of power is with the nurse. If you post about a client, you are exploiting a vulnerable person for your own purposes, even if unknowingly.
The case study however, has opened my eyes to how easily confidentiality can be breached by discussing one’s work place. I never even considered the possibility before that someone could comment on your post and reveal confidential information. I do how think it is still okay to post very general statement about how your day...
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