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Twitter could provide 'innovative solutions' for long-term conditions

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Research by a Bournemouth University web professional suggests that social networking website Twitter could be an effective means of delivering improved quality of life to people suffering from long-term conditions.

The research, which looked at blogging and microblogging among practitioners, patients, and support groups has identified Twitter as a possible means of improving the personalised nature of health care delivery and support.

Author Andy Pulman, from Bournemouth University’s School of Health & Social Care, said that Twitter “could cultivate and inspire private, focused group conversations between people with chronic conditions and offer an effective targeted information channel for practitioners”.

Speaking about his paper, Pulman said: “Twitter has evolved beyond its basic functionality to provide a variety of alternate uses, some of which are health-related and which might offer opportunities in relation to improving health. I feel that the internet, mobile technology and web applications like Twitter are ideal candidates for providing innovative solutions to help deliver improved health-related quality of life. My ongoing research in this area aims to find out if this is the case.”

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