Dr. Ryan Greysen, pictured on right, in a hypothetical photo demonstrating what type of online physician behavior could prompt state boards to investigate. (Image used with permission by Dr. Ryan Greysen.)

Dr. Ryan Greysen, pictured on right, in a hypothetical photo demonstrating what type of online physician behavior could prompt state boards to investigate. Depicted Use of Alcohol Without Intoxication Online –Vignette with low consensus for investigation. (Image used with permission by Dr. Ryan Greysen.)

The following photos were sent to me by Dr. Ryan Greysen, and are published in the latest issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine, “Online Professionalism Investigations by State Medical Boards: First, Do No Harm,” by S. Ryan Greysen, MD, MHS, MA; David Johnson, MA; Terry Kind, MD, MPH; Katherine C. Chretien, MD; Cary P. Gross, MD, MPH; Aaron Young, PhD; and Humayun J. Chaudhry, DO, MS.

Dr. Ryan Greysen, assistant professor at the University of California, San Francisco appears in these hypothetical photos “created to look exactly what we found online,” he said in an interview.  These are examples of what could prompt investigations by state medical boards.

A previous post published on Healthin30, “State Medical Boards Addresses Inappropriate Online Physician Behaviors,” addresses what type of online physician behavior could prompt state board investigations.  A piece in The Huffington Post, “Doctors Behaving Badly in Social Networking Sites: What Would Prompt State Boards to Investigate?” addresses the issue and includes an interesting comment by a reader.

Picutured Dr. Ryan Greysen in a hypothetical photo demonstrating what type of online physician behavior could prompt state boards to investigate. Depicted Use of Alcohol With Intoxication Online –Vignette with moderate consensus for investigation. (Image used with permission by Dr. Ryan Greysen.)

Pictured Dr. Ryan Greysen in a hypothetical photo demonstrating what type of online physician behavior could prompt state boards to investigate. Depicted Use of Alcohol With Intoxication Online –Vignette with moderate consensus for investigation. (Image used with permission by Dr. Ryan Greysen.)

In another article by Dr. Greysen, and Terry Kind, MD, MPH, and Katherine C. Chretien, MD, “Online Professionalism and the Mirror of Social Media,” published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine, the authors write:  “Regrettably, social media can enable content posted in a momentary lapse in judgment to spread rapidly beyond the intended audience with a simple “click.”  In this sense, social media can act as a mirror reflecting intimate thoughts and behaviors back to oneself as well as to others around the world. For an increasingly Internet-savvy public, “images” reflected by this social media mirror may prove very important in sizing up not only the credentials, but also the character of professionals.”

Learn what online content could prompt state boards to investigate here.

Your turn

What are your thoughts on  physicians online use in social networking sites?    Are you a physician or another licensed health care professional?  How do you use social media?  What rules guide you?