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Social Media Leads To Ethical Issues For Nurses


Many people dislike going to the doctor. They would rather get medical advice online, particularly from social media influencers. The explosion of TikTok, Instagram, and other social media sites has made it easy for nurses, doctors, and other medical professionals to act as influencers.

In the social media world, influencers are those who have built a reputation for their knowledge and expertise on a specific topic. They make regular posts about that topic on various social media channels to generate large numbers of followers.

However, medical professionals who act as influencers may be crossing gray areas when it comes to ethics. Some have even gotten fired.

Many post medical-related content on social media sites to bring in extra income. Certain ads can bring in thousands of dollars. However, people need to be wary of what they are doing online and how it affects their career, as posting content on TikTok or other social media sites could be a breach of contract.

Employers often see social media content as competition, so they discipline the content creators. In many cases, they are fired, with people learning about this the hard way.

Medical professionals started to get into social media more during the COVID pandemic to help patients who otherwise would not seek medical care. Social media has now become a knowledgebase for Americans suffering from health conditions. In fact, statistics show that 1 in 5 Americans looking for information about a health issue will turn to TikTok for advice before seeing a medical professional. YouTube is even actively encouraging licensed doctors and nurses to share their expertise in videos online.

However, in the healthcare industry, the lines are blurred. It’s easy to see why some people are getting fired, like the nurses who created a TikTok video making fun of labor and delivery patients, executives who make racist and sexist tweets, and nursing home workers who post explicit photos of seniors on social media. And then there are many nurses and medical providers who are getting fired for unknown reasons.

The rules are not clear-cut. It’s hard for medical professionals to know their organization’s policies. As long as they are not engaging in HIPAA violations or doing anything else unethical, shouldn’t doctors and nurses be able to express themselves and post what they want? Shouldn’t they be able to use their knowledge for good and help viewers make informed choices when it comes to their healthcare?

Keep Your License With Help From a Tampa Nursing License Lawyer

Nurses and other medical professionals have to abide by ethics. When they display content on social media sites and act as influencers, they may violate contracts and workplace rules.

A Tampa nursing license lawyer from The Law Offices of David P. Rankin, P.A. can help resolve your licensing matter. I’ll help you restore your license and avoid penalties. Fill out the online form or call (813) 968-6633 to schedule a consultation.