Influencing the media – is it a midwife’s responsibility?
My interest in social media was sparked after I left the NHS in 2011, to embark on more academic learning, travelling and having quality time with my grandchildren. I’ve increasingly become more engaged with mainstream media because of social media, via links to topical maternity related pieces in magazines, newspapers and TV channels. Using social media has been a huge learning curve with enormous benefits to my life and career, though there have been some serious, darker moments. As well as connecting with positive like-minded individuals globally who support and nurture me, I’ve accessed hot-off-the-press articles and blog posts, and been able to share them widely. One of the most exciting opportunities social media has offered me, is an enhanced ability to communicate with women and families who use health services, especially maternity care. Whilst always considering professional accountability to myself and the Nursing and Midwifery Council, I find this is an essential part of my midwifery role – listening to a wider perspective, trying to appreciate the views and opinions of others. Social media enables this beyond face-to-face connections. It also gives me the chance to positively influence, to encourage and to share knowledge.