How the Internet Impacts Medical Companies

I’ve never been one to freak-out over medical concerns. I go to the doctor maybe once a year. I don’t take any medications. And I almost never take sick days from work (though I know others may wish I did!)

The other day I noticed a bump on my gum. I immediately took to the Internet and several pages and articles later, I determined this bump was life threatening, and I needed to go to a doctor right away. Ok – so I know this sounds pretty extreme for a so-called non-hypochondria, but the internet can be pretty powerful!

So I called my dentist and went in the next day. Turns out, nothing was wrong…it was just part of my bone. I told my dental team about my countless Internet searches, and they told me these days it’s quite common for wrongful self-diagnosis from online searches.

The Internet is full of people doing online medical searches. Did you know 4 out of 5 Internet users perform a health related search online according to the New York Times?

According to a presentation from MD Connect, the internet can be 2-3X more efficient than traditional media and cost less money.

Here are some interesting facts:

  • 80% of US. adults search for health information online.
  • 47% of Internet users search for information about doctors or other health professionals.
  • 38% of Internet users search for information about hospitals and other medical facilities.
  • 90% of adults age 18-24 trust medical information shared by others in their social media networks.

If your symptoms include a lack of new patients and a desire to grow your practice, then you don’t need WebMD to tell you digital marketing is your best treatment.

Looking for a place to start? If you’re a medical professional, watch this medical webinar about steps to success with social media.


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