I am a nurse who uses social media a lot. It is my loudest voice.
My role and ambitions are mid-range. As a student nurse I thought it would be cool to be a Nurse Educator or Clinical Nurse Consultant – I’ve achieved that. I have never aspired to one of those senior management/academic gigs. The downside to that lack of ambition is the limited opportunities to set agendas that drive broad change. In fact, even getting ideas heard or considered is difficult at times.
[insert sound of trumpets going “TooDa-TooDa” here] Social media to the rescue!
And, (this is the main point of this blog post), it is OK for nurses to use social media. Actually, it’s not just OK, USING SOCIAL MEDIA IS RECOMMENDED FOR NURSES AND MIDWIVES.
Don’t believe me?
In the ‘National Nursing and Midwifery Digital Health Capability Framework‘ there is a section specifically about being online, as below:
1.3 Digital Identity
Nurses and midwives use digital tools to develop and maintain their online identity and reputation.
This section has four parts – feel free to tweet your favourites 🙂
Digital Identity 1.3.1: Maintains a professional development record demonstrating innovation, reflecting upon skills and experience to help monitor professional identity.Tweet
You could use a free app or website for that, for example:
Or just keep it all online via the ANMF Continuing Professional Education portal
Digital Identity 1.3.2: Understands the benefits and risks of different ways of presenting oneself online, both professionally and personally while adhering to the NMBA social media policy.Tweet
The policy uses slightly more formal language (read it for yourself here), but can be accurately summarised as “Even if you’re prone to being a dickhead at times IRL, when you’re representing yourself as a nurse online don’t be a dickhead.” If you do be a dickhead online occasionally (to err is human, blah blah blah), be sure to proactively delete and/or apologise.
It is MUCH more simple to keep your private and professional social media identities separate. Create a social media portfolio using the same name on your work name badge/AHPRA registration just for work-related stuff. That’s what I’ve done here linktr.ee/meta4RN Look, I know I’ve overdone it (#tryhard), but that was intentional too. I created the meta4RN social media portfolio at a time when the “prevailing wisdom” (“prevailing ignorance”, more like it 🙄) amongst hospital and university influencers was that social media is bad. Some of these people are still impersonating Grandpa Simpson and shaking their fist at the cloud. And the internet. And social media.
Digital Identity 1.3.3: Understands that online posts can stay in the public domain and contribute to an individual’s digital footprint.Tweet
Digital Identity 1.3.4: Recognises that their professional digital footprint, where it exists, should showcase their skills, education, and professional experience.Tweet
Don’t hide your light under a bushel. If you’re a nurse please celebrate your achievements – if we don’t, who will?
My (univited) advice to nurses and midwives is this: Don’t be afraid of social media. Be intentional.Tweet
Australian Digital Health Agency, 2020. National Nursing and Midwifery Digital Health Capability Framework. Australian Government: Sydney, NSW.
Thanks for visiting the meta4RN.com website/blog. Be sure to use the QR Code above or this link to see other arms of my
m̶a̶g̶n̶i̶f̶i̶c̶e̶n̶t̶ m̶e̶t̶a̶4̶R̶N̶ ̶s̶o̶c̶i̶a̶l̶ ̶m̶e̶d̶i̶a̶ ̶e̶m̶p̶i̶r̶e̶ try-hard professional social media portfolio (aka professional digital identity).
As always, your feedback is welcome via the comments section below.
Paul McNamara, 5 August 2021
Short URL meta4RN.com/ID