Social media usage has been proven to increase during natural disasters and other crises. It is crucial for the scientific community to understand how social media works in order to enhance our capabilities to deal with a crisis and thereby, make us more resilient.
Through social media communication, the scientific community can collaborate around the globe in a time-efficient manner. They can convey the most important findings regarding a particular disease, with a decreased knowledge transfer time, to other healthcare professionals (HCPs).
This is of great importance when coordinating with each other on research and knowledge, especially during a time of uncertainty and spreading of potentially fake news.
During the current global pandemic, social media has become an ally, but also a potential threat. High volumes of information compressed into a short time period can result in overwhelmed HCPs trying to discern facts from noise.
A major limitation of social media nowadays is its ability to quickly disseminate false information, which can confuse and distract users.
Society relies on educated scientists and physicians to be leaders in delivering fact-based information to the public. For this reason, in times of crises, it is important to have reliable leaders who guide the masses with correct and helpful information, as they look for answers online.