Hospitals say using social media to attract patients benefits both patients themselves and providers. Critics say it’s about generating revenue … not to mention the privacy concerns.

When the University of Pennsylvania Health System sought new patients for its lung transplant service last year, it turned to Facebook and Google. The results of the $20,000 advertising campaign on the websites exceeded administrators’ expectations. During a few weeks in August and September, more than 4,600 people clicked on the ads and 36 people made appointments for consultations.

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Quick Read: Hospitals Finding Patients on Google, Facebook 12 July,2012Lisa Aliferis

Author

Lisa Aliferis

Lisa Aliferis is the founding editor of KQED’s State of Health blog. Since 2011, she’s been writing and editing stories for the site. Before taking up blogging, she toiled for many years (more than we can count) producing health stories for television, including Dateline NBC and San Francisco’s CBS affiliate, KPIX-TV. She also wrote up a handy guide to the Affordable Care Act, especially for Californians. Her work has been honored for many awards. Most recently she was a finalist for “Best Topical Reporting” from the Online News Association. You can follow her on Twitter: @laliferis

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