Social Media and Health

Use of social media platforms and data to disseminate health information and to understand and improve individual and population health behaviors and outcomes.

Know Your Epidemic, Know Your Response: Early perceptions of COVID-19 And Self-Reported Social Distancing In The United States

Hans-Peter Kohler, PhD
Sep. 4, 2020

Alberto Ciancio, Fabrice Kämpfen, Iliana V. Kohler, Daniel Bennett, Wändi Bruine de Bruin, Jill Darling, Arie Kapteyn, Jürgen Maurer, Hans-Peter Kohler 

Abstract [from journal]

As COVID-19 is rapidly unfolding in the United States, it is important to understand how individuals perceive the health and economic risks of the pandemic. In the absence of a readily available medical treatment, any strategy to contain the virus in the US will depend on the behavioral response of US residents. In this paper, we study individual's perceptions on COVID-19 and social distancing during the week of March 10-16, 2020, a week when COVID-19 was officially declared to be a pandemic by WHO and when new infections in the US

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Characteristics Of Twitter Use By State Medicaid Programs In The United States: Machine Learning Approach

Aug. 17, 2020

Jane M. Zhu, Abeed Sarker, Sarah Gollust, Raina MerchantDavid Grande

Abstract [from journal]

Background: Twitter is a potentially valuable tool for public health officials and state Medicaid programs in the United States, which provide public health insurance to 72 million Americans.

Objective: We aim to characterize how Medicaid agencies and managed care organization (MCO) health plans are using Twitter to communicate with the public.

Methods: Using Twitter's public application programming interface, we collected 158,714 public posts ("tweets") from active

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There's A Problem With The Problem List: Incongruence Of Patient Problem Information Across The Home Care Admission

Jul. 28, 2020

Paulina S. Sockolow, Kathryn H. Bowles, Natasha B. Le, Sheryl Potashnik, Yushi Yang, Carl Pankok Jr, Claire Champion, Ellen J. Bass

Abstract [from journal]

Objectives: Illustrate patterns of patient problem information received and documented across the home health care (HHC) admission process and offer practice, policy, and health information technology recommendations to improve information transfer.

Design: Observational field study.

Setting and participants: Three diverse HHC agencies using different commercial point-of-care electronic health records (EHRs). Six nurses per agency each admitted 2 patients (36 total).

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Ethics And Informatics In The Age Of COVID-19: Challenges And Recommendations For Public Health Organization And Public Policy

Ross Koppel, PhD
Jul. 28, 2020

Vignesh Subbian, Anthony Solomonides, Melissa Clarkson, Vasiliki Nataly Rahimzadeh, Carolyn Petersen, Richard Schreiber, Paul R. DeMuro, Prerna Dua, Kenneth W. Goodman, Bonnie Kaplan, Ross Koppel, Christoph U. Lehmann, Eric Pan, Yalini Senathirajah

Abstract [from journal]

The COVID-19 pandemic response in the United States has exposed significant gaps in information systems and processes to enable timely clinical and public health decision-making. Specifically, the use of informatics to mitigate the spread of SARS-CoV-2, support COVID-19 care delivery, and accelerate knowledge discovery bring to the forefront issues of privacy, surveillance, limits of state powers, and interoperability between public health and clinical information systems. Using a consensus building process, we critically analyze

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Proposal For Smoke-Free Public Housing: A Systematic Review Of Attitudes And Preferences From Residents Of Multi-Unit Housing

Frank Leone, MD, MS
Jul. 3, 2020

Panagis Galiatsatos, Rachelle Koehl, Christine Caufield-Noll, Emily Brigham, Frank T. Leone, Michelle Eakin, Nadia N. Hansel, Cynthia Rand, Meredith McCormack

Abstract [from journal]

A policy proposal to ban public housing smoking indoors has received support, but it is unclear how certain affected groups, specifically smokers in housing units, perceive such a policy. To review the literature on attitudes and perceptions of housing unit tenants towards an indoor smoke-free housing policy, using various databases, we searched articles for attitudes towards smoking ban enforcement in housing units. We identified fourteen articles. Non-smokers heavily favored indoor policies and current smokers heavily opposed them.

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Assessment Of Beliefs And Attitudes About Statins Posted On Twitter: A Qualitative Study

Robert Gross, MD, MSCE
Jun. 1, 2020

Su Golder, Karen O'Connor, Sean HennessyRobert Gross, Graciela Gonzalez-Hernandez 

Abstract [from journal]

Importance: Statins are prescribed to help lower cholesterol levels but have poor adherence rates. Attitudes or beliefs toward medications are important to ascertain because they may be associated with patient behavior.

Objective: To identify health-related discussion in Twitter posts mentioning a statin and analyze the content within these posts.

Design, setting, and participants: This qualitative study included 11 852 posts related to 1 of 8 statins (7 licensed for use

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Valence of Media Coverage About Electronic Cigarettes And Other Tobacco Products From 2014-2017: Evidence From Automated Content Analysis

Robert C. Hornik, PhD
May. 19, 2020

Kwanho Kim, Laura A Gibson, Sharon Williams, Yoonsang Kim, Steven Binns, Sherry L Emery, Robert C Hornik

Abstract [from journal]

Introduction: As media exposure can influence people's opinions and perceptions about vaping and smoking, analyzing the valence of media content about tobacco products (i.e., overall attitude toward tobacco, cigars, electronic cigarettes, etc.) is an important issue. This study advances the field by analyzing a large amount of media content about multiple tobacco products across six different media sources.

Methods: From May 2014 to December 2017, we collected all English-language media items about...

Pregnancy and Health in the Age of the Internet: A Content Analysis of Online "Birth Club" Forums

Apr. 14, 2020

Anna Wexler, Anahita Davoudi, Davy Weissenbacher, Rebekah Choi, Karen O’Connor, Holly Cummings, Graciela Gonzalez-Hernandez

Abstract [from journal]

Background: Although studies report that more than 90% of pregnant women utilize digital sources to supplement their maternal healthcare, little is known about the kinds of information that women seek from their peers during pregnancy. To date, most research has used self-report measures to elucidate how and why women to turn to digital sources during pregnancy. However, given that these measures may differ from actual utilization of online health information, it is important to analyze the online content pregnant women generate.

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Exploring the Effect of Health App Use on Fruit and Vegetable Consumption

Robert C. Hornik, PhD
Apr. 14, 2020

Kwang Gi Kim, Christopher J. Lee, Robert C. Hornik

Abstract [from journal]

People may use multiple health apps at the same time or in close sequence, and the effect of health apps may vary across different socioeconomic groups. However, in the context of healthy eating, studies have focused on the effect of using a single health app. This study aims to test the relationship of using multiple health apps with fruit and vegetable consumption, assessing moderation by education level. Employing longitudinal survey data from South Korean adults, we conducted regression analyses to test the lagged association between use of health

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Exploring Substance Use Tweets of Youth in the United States: Mixed Methods Study

Mar. 26, 2020

Robin C. Stevens, Bridgette M. Brawner, Elissa Kranzler, Salvatore Giorgi, Elizabeth Lazarus, Maramawit Abera, Sarah Huang, Lyle Ungar

Abstract [from journal]

Background: Substance use by youth remains a significant public health concern. Social media provides the opportunity to discuss and display substance use-related beliefs and behaviors, suggesting that the act of posting drug-related content, or viewing posted content, may influence substance use in youth. This aligns with empirically supported theories, which posit that behavior is influenced by perceptions of normative behavior. Nevertheless, few studies have explored the content of posts by youth related to substance use.

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Variability in Language Used on Social Media Prior to Hospital Visits

Mar. 12, 2020

Sharath Chandra Guntuku, H. Andrew Schwartz, Adarsh Kashyap, Jessica S. Gaulton, Daniel C. Stokes, David A. Asch, Lyle H. Ungar, Raina M. Merchant

Abstract [from journal]

Forecasting healthcare utilization has the potential to anticipate care needs, either accelerating needed care or redirecting patients toward care most appropriate to their needs. While prior research has utilized clinical information to forecast readmissions, analyzing digital footprints from social media can inform our understanding of individuals' behaviors, thoughts, and motivations preceding a healthcare visit. We evaluate how language patterns on social media change prior to emergency department (ED) visits and inpatient hospital admissions in

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