Many oncologists have lengthy had a love-hate relationship with Twitter. It could possibly assist them keep knowledgeable of the newest therapy information in a fast-moving discipline and facilitate dialogue with sufferers. Conversely, it may be a waste of time, deflate morale, and provoke snarky commentary or worse, harassment.
Physicians should even be conscious to type by the sheer quantity of content material, together with posts from so-called “oncology influencers” who might need monetary conflicts of curiosity or work with public relations individuals at pharmaceutical corporations.
But some oncologists say Twitter has developed to facilitate one other vital endeavor: analysis. Through the early days of the pandemic, Jeremy Warner, MD, (@hemoncwarner), affiliate professor of drugs and biomedical informatics at Vanderbilt College in Nashville, Tennessee, turned all in favour of following the #COVID19 hashtag on Twitter to maintain updated on whether or not any of the key spring most cancers conferences had been being canceled.
Then Dr Warner, who’s additionally deputy editor at HemOnc.org, stumbled upon a Twitter thread about whether or not fellow oncologists ought to use their private followings to unfold the phrase about the necessity to gather details about most cancers sufferers who had been contaminated with the novel coronavirus. “We latched onto it,” he mentioned. “I had 1000 followers on the time, however others had 20,000. It rapidly was delivered to the eye of a core group of individuals. 5 establishments turned 14, after which it saved rising from there.”
That was the genesis of the Covid-19 & Cancer Consortium (CCC19), which is now supported by greater than 120 most cancers facilities and different organizations. Thus far, the consortium has authored 2 peer-reviewed journal articles, three scientific displays, and eight editorials and commentaries. “All that consciousness got here by Twitter,” he mentioned. “I feel now we have a web page on LinkedIn, however it’s 99% Twitter.”
The social media platform can also be useful to unfold the phrase about new analysis. Concerning the CCC19’s first publication in The Lancet in June 2020, the journal’s PlumX Metrics operate (the one utilized by the writer Elsevier) has counted greater than 1300 Twitter interactions, together with tweets and retweets for that article.1
But Dr Warner mentioned the rating for that article through Altmetric — a software which measures the attain of articles, and one for which establishments pay a charge to entry — is proof of Twitter’s energy. “It reached three million individuals. That’s what occurs with amplification. For our first paper concerning the consortium, that’s wonderful,” mentioned Dr Warner. He added that greater than half of the tweets had been from members of most people.
This text initially appeared on Cancer Therapy Advisor