The Internet is a seemingly endless source of medical information.With a couple of mouse clicks, we can easily access useful resources, such as specialty medical websites, PDA downloads, online CME courses, drug databases, literature reviews, and more. We can even download educational podcasts to listen to while driving to work. With so much high-quality information available, deciding where to begin your search can be a challenge.
Not to worry: we’ve compiled 20 of the best social media sites, blogs and commentary, podcast collections, PDA downloads, clinical information collections, and medical websites. Use these sites to stay up-to-date with the latest news, information, and opinions in your specialty.Social Media for Doctors (and Doctors-to-Be)
Let’s face it, being a doctor can be very lonely sometimes. We are often faced with difficult decisions—and little time in which to make them. Our days are long and stressful, with few opportunities to actually sit down and talk with colleagues. Often the civilians around us are tired of our same old complaints or they just don’t “get it” because they aren’t living it. Online forums for doctors provide the perfect solution, especially for physicians in solo practice. These forums provide a place where doctors can go to talk to other doctors about their workload and clinical cases, or just socialize with like-minded colleagues. Here are some of the best:SermoSermo
—which means “conversation” in Latin—is accessible at no cost to all physicians in the US. Growing at a rate of more than 700 physicians per week, Sermo has become the go-to destination for physicians nationwide to share observations from their practices and exchange medical insights as they are happening. Founded by Dr. Daniel Palestrant
, Sermo currently claims more than 15,000 members representing a wide spectrum of medical specialties.
In order to sign on to Sermo, you must be an MD or DO. A clever registration process verifies your license and DEA number, and thereby your status as a physician. You can post on any topic and receive feedback within minutes any time of the day or night. One member says “Oh, it’s so much fun, it feels like sitting in a physician’s lounge.” You can find doctors discussing the impact Sermo has had on their practices
. (You’ll have to register with Sermo before you can access the discussion forum). Here is a particularly touching thread
written by a doctor who was feeling burnt out and in need of some support:The Student Doctor NetworkThe Student Doctor Network
describes itself as an independent community of students, advisors, educators, and practicing doctors. Their membership extends from students to practitioners in every field of healthcare, from allopathic to veterinary medicine. I wish something like this had existed when I was a student or resident. The discussions range from students talking about which schools have the best match statistics, to medical students talking about what to expect during their clinical rotations, to the best clinical rotations around the country for their “open” choices. There are forums for physicians with MD/PhDs, as well as forums devoted to various medical subspecialties. The boards are free from spam and arguments and feature not only invaluable conversation, but also a level of warmth rarely found on discussion boards. Although this website was chosen for its forums, I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that it off ers many other features, such as application help, discussions with doctors, podcasts, and much more. I really can’t say enough about how impressed I am with this website.Within3Within3
is an Internet-based social network for physicians and researchers to exchange information based on best practices and knowledge related to the diagnosis and treatment of illness. However, you can only gain access by invitation from another Within3 member. Physicians invite their trusted colleagues, who in turn can invite other highly regarded peers, expanding the network of respected medical professionals into an international alliance. Within3 provides physicians with credible and trusted information from their peers, and also offers a reliable vehicle for referrals. Although Within3 does not offer any type of discussion area or forum, it does provide a means of posting your research or stating your accomplishments and contacting colleagues privately.Blogs, Blog Aggregators, and Commentary
The truth is that there are thousands of blogs out there, with thousands more created every day, which makes it virtually impossible to pick a “best” blog. That being said, there are a few that stand out, not only for their content, but also for how easy they make it for you to find other blogs.Medpundit