Researchers share results of their studies on social media

On this year’s Philippine Healthcare and Social Media Summit, six researchers conferred their studies during the oral research presentation.

Included in the list were Dr. Iris Thiele Isip-Tan of #HealthXPh, Mr. Kennedy Espina of the Ateneo de Manila University Department of Information Systems and Computer Science, Mr. Ralph Jason Li of the Philippine General Hospital (PGH), Mr. Rick Jason Obrero of the University of the Philippines College of Medicine Medical Informatics Unit, Ms. Ann Meredith Garcia of the Blessed Family Doctors General Hospital, and Mr. Nelson Tiongson of the UP Manila Medical Informatics Unit.

Isip-Tan presented her research entitled “Content Analysis of Tweets of Pregnant Women with Diabetes” which aims to describe health beliefs of pregnant women with diabetes using tweets and discussed how information on diabetes in pregnancy is shared on Twitter. According to Isip-Tan, Twitter can be an expressive tool for women who have preexisting diabetes and Gestational Diabetes (GD) as this has identified issues that are important to the patients.

Espina discussed his master thesis which presents the use of real-time latent data from social media, particularly from Twitter, to complement existing disease surveillance efforts. He mentioned using Infodemiology to predict a range of possible disease incidences of dengue and typhoid fever within the Western Visayas region.

Li presented his study on the main sources of anxiety and dissatisfaction of gestational diabetes patients as determined by the content analysis of their blogs using the online tool Symplur. Results from his study showed that 422 out of 2,787 sentences from the 56 blogs expressed anxiety or dissatisfaction on symptoms or side effects (18.96%) and treatment (18.25%).

Obredo, on the other hand, discussed his research project wherein he gathered comments from Dr. Iris Thiele Isip-Tan’s highest commented Facebook post on Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS). He recommended using a better pre-processing algorithm for the study.

Garcia presented her study on lung cancer-related Twitter activity among patients and healthcare-related professionals. She explained that Twitter can be used to describe aspects related to hashtag #lungcancer as well as the top concerns of patients by using cross-sectional internet-based study involving the analysis of all publicly available tweets posted by patients and healthcare professionals.

Tiongson explained that his study hopes to provide an initial assessment on how Facebook is being utilized as a health communications platform. Data from the Department of Health (DOH) Facebook page was consolidated and compared along with the standards defined in the Process Evaluation Framework by Neiger et. al. (2012). Based from the findings, the DOH Facebook Page has not been fully utilized, mostly in terms of engagement principles of social media.

The 3rd Philippine Healthcare and Social Media Summit is a summit organized by the Council, in partnership with the #HealthXPh.

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