Before July 26, 2015, I had never spent more than 5 minutes on any micro-blogging sites, thinking I had better ways to obtain the same information from official sites and could also ensure the accuracy of the information. My view on micro-blogging has been proven somewhat inaccurate or incomplete after spending a few hours reading through a few professional diabetes organizations/associations’ micro-blogs on Twitter.
Diabetes is the field in which I have chosen to devote my career, so I slowly receive more and more emails from diabetes professional associations. Thanks to the email messages that I have received so far, I have been able to keep up (somewhat…a little) with what the new drugs are, what new research projects are being done, who the cool people are in the field…
The three diabetes professional associations I have checked out on Twitter were:
- American Diabetes Association (ADA)
- American Association of Clinical Endocrinologist (AACE)
- American Association of Diabetes Educator (AADE)
American Diabetes Association (ADA)
Normally, I would search Amazon.com if I wanted to buy books. Surprisingly, one of the fans of the ADA Twitter page tweeted to introduce a very useful book Annual Review of Diabetes 2015 – The Best of the American Diabetes Association’s Scholarly Journals. I have always wanted to have a book like this one, collecting the best journal articles published in the past year. This book will definitely help me in doing literature search for my future research projects. With that thought in mind, I placed an order on Amazon.com for this book as soon as I saw the posting.
Tweets on books are just the tip of the iceberg. I also learned from one of the tweets that there has been ongoing research to investigate a “smart” insulin patch where insulin would be released from the patch if sugar levels in patient’s body were high. While I do not completely understand the technology and the mechanism behind this product, I am pleased to know that this “smart” insulin patch will one day be available to many diabetic patients to choose from as one of their treatment options.
American Association of Clinical Endocrinologist (AACE)
Although there are very few recent updates/tweets on this twitter page, this page does contain some useful information. For example, the American Heart Association and the American College of Cardiology (ACC/AHA) jointly published the latest lipid and obesity guidelines, and these guidelines touched on the process of care for diabetic patients in terms of lipid management. I have used this lipid guideline in practice as soon as it came out, and this guideline was endorsed by ADA. On the other hand, AACE rejects these heart groups’ guidelines.
American Association of Diabetes Educator (AADE)
There are not that many posts on this Twitter page. However, two statewide chapters are very obvious; accounts are posted on top of the page: Arizona AADE and American Diabetes AL. This shows me a sense of helping each other out and a sense of community – American Diabetes AL is not a chapter in AADE; it is under ADA. Ultimately, we are doing everything we can to help patients to live healthier and happier.
Although this experience did not convince me to get an account on micro-blogging social media/networking, this experience did show me to keep an open mind or keep reminding myself to have an open mind. After all, I have chosen to devote my career in helping patients with diabetes, which means I have to be a resourceful person so that I can share all the resources, new discoveries, new drugs, etc. with whom I serve. Heather Mansfield sums up perfectly in her book A How-to Guide for Nonprofits Social Media for Social Good, “Twitter is both more complicated and more fascinating that it appears; it is a community in which success is earned and rarely guaranteed” (Mansfield, 2012).
- Mansfield, H. (2012). Social Media for Social Good. A How-To Guide For Nonprofits. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill Companies.