Patients, families find comfort and help in sharing their stories via social media | DIGITEAM |

Panelists at Mayo-hosted Health Care Social Media Summit discuss how social media has helped them, their families and their peers.

It was hard to miss one recurring theme at the Health Care Social Media Summit, which began Wednesday, Oct. 23, in Rochester and wraps up today: The patient experience is at the center of health care social media efforts. And if it isn't, it should be.


Social media has given a voice to patients who want to talk about their illnesses and health care experiences. "It allows everyone to be a journalist," says Lee Aase, director of the Mayo Clinic Center for Social Media. Aase hosted a panel of presenters who were at the summit specifically to share their inspiring stories and talk about why patients blog, Facebook, tweet and pin about their experiences. Each of the presenters had a unique story to tell and was there "on the house" after winning a scholarship essay contest.