Social Media and Free Open Access Medical Education (Plenary

Blog by Jack Wong Edited by Adrian Wong

Social Media and Free Open Access Medical Education

Chair: Anna Batchelor

: Rob Mac Sweeney, Jonathan Downham, Stephen Webb, Mark Forrest, Steve Mathieu, Adrian Wong

The discussion is opened by Steve Mathieu’s short presentation followed by Adrian Wong’s. The former states the benefit of social media and FOAM as an adjunct to medical education while the latter reminds the audience of the caveat of learning via social media.

  • Steve Mathieu
    • Learning is much easier with technology. We have the flexibility of fully embrace, be aware or ignore it.
    • However, nothing can ever replace bedside teaching
    • FOAM is only an adjunct
    • Where can we find the latest infomation? Twitter.
    • It aids data dissemination and discussion
    • Speed up discussion of latest journal articles
  • Adrian Wong: The other side of the story
    • Technology makes us lazy – we are reaping the effort of others from FOAM rather than analysing the information with own critical thinking.
    • Who should we follow? Does popular means credibility?
    • Meredith Ringel Morris – Tweeting is Believing?
    • Having an opinion on something doesn’t make you an expert
    • Be professional, critique the source, have a go.


The discussion is followed by questions from Anna Batchelor.


Should we use Social Media?

  • Forrest: SoMe is a tool. It is how you use it that matters
  • Mathieu: Remain vigilant and have a critical mindset.


Does it change how we work?

  • Downham: Very useful tool to network with the globe.
  • MacSweeney: This is society moving on with time.


How democratic is SoMe? Why is there no girl in the panel? (It is chaired by a female though)

  • Mathieu: Don’t know. It reflects male to female ratio of speakers in conferences.
  • Downham: Female are very active as well.
  • Forrest: There is no other way of keeping up to date.
  • MacSweeney: It bring instantaneous update.


References/Further reading

GMC Social Media Guide

ICS Guide to Social Media

ICM Case Summaries

Critical Care Practitioner

Wessex: The Bottom Line

Critical Care Reviews