How NOT to Blog About Your Job. Especially If You Are a Doctor.

Excellent, must-read thoughts for medical bloggers: Clinical Cases and Images – Blog: Simply Fired – How NOT to Blog About Your Job. Especially If You Are a Doctor..

To stay out of trouble, always ask yourself: What if my patients are reading this?  What if my colleagues are reading it?

Be honest and respectful to others. And once again, remember the HIPAA rules.

A question for the medical bloggers: Should we try to establish guidelines for medical blogging?

Now with and the Grand Rounds, the movement is becoming more or less organized. Everybody values their freedom of expression and that is understandable. But should we try to construct a crude framework of what is OK and what is not? It could be helpful to the new medical bloggers who joining the field almost on a daily basis.

My short answer is, those ARE the guidelines (though sometimes I bend the ‘respectful’ a touch).  They’re succinct and easy to understand, perfect for doctors.

Earlier in the article he discussed the pseudo-anonymity of blogs like mine, Red State Moron, etc., and quite rightly points out that we could be ‘outed’ pretty easily.  I’ve been telling everyone who writes me with a ‘how should I start a medical blog’ the same thing: you’re not anonymous, you’re just not broadcasting your personal identity.

Please read the entire entry.  There are good points to be had there.

via medmusings


  1. I try to follow those rule in essence. I also blog under a pseudonym, mainly because I don’t want the first thing patients find out about me when Googling my name to be my blog. (They might not understand the bit about EneMan and the box of blinking lights called “Orac.”)

    Also, a fair number of people know my “true” identity, including my Department Chair and Division Chief; so I already know that my colleagues could be reading. That’s part of the reason that I don’t blog as much about cases as I used to (and when I’m do I’m acutely aware of avoiding HIPAA violations), and I never, ever bitch about work on my blog. ;-)

  2. I have the same policy as Orac, in that polple I work with are aware of the blog (including the boss), and for that reason I try, very hard, not to kvetch about those I work with. Generalized gripes, ok; specific gripes, not so much.

    The majority of the case posting I now do is personally indistinguishable (I sincerely hope and endeavor to make it so).