This policy provides guidance for members of the practice on using social media internally and externally. The policy helps identify and mitigate risks associated with social media use.
For the purposes of this policy, ‘social media’ is online social networks used to disseminate information through online interaction.
Regardless of whether social media is used for business-related activity or for personal reasons, the following policy requirements apply to all GPs and practice staff of the practice. GPs and practice staff are legally responsible for their online activities, and if found to be in breach of this policy will be disciplined in one or more of the following ways:
- disciplinary and/or legal action
- termination of employment
- the practice team, contractors and other staff being held personally liable for damages caused by any violations of this policy
Use of practice social media accounts
The practice will appoint a staff member as a social media officer responsible for managing and monitoring the practice’s social media accounts. All posts on the practice’s social media website will be made by this staff member.The practice reserves the right to remove any content at its own discretion.
Staff conduct on social media
When using the practice’s social media, practice staff will NOT:
- post any material that
- is racist, sexist, homophobic, transphobic, xenophobic or material that is otherwise hateful
- is unlawful, threatening, defamatory, pornographic, inflammatory, menacing or offensive
- infringes or breaches another person’s rights (including intellectual property rights) or privacy, or misuses the practice’s or another person’s confidential information (eg do not submit confidential information relating to our patients, personal information of staff, or information concerning the practice’s business operations that have not been made public)
- is materially damaging or could be materially damaging to the practice’s reputation or image, or another individual
- is in breach of any of the practice’s policies or procedures
- use social media to send unsolicited commercial electronic messages, or solicit other users to buy or sell products or services or donate money
- impersonate another person or entity (eg by pretending to be someone else or another practice employee or other participant when you submit a contribution to social media) or by using another’s registration identifier without permission
- tamper with, hinder the operation of, or make unauthorised changes to the social media sites
- knowingly transmit any virus or other disabling feature to or via the practice’s social media account, or use in any email to a third party, or the social media site
- attempt to do or permit another person to do any of these things
- claim or imply that you are speaking on the practice’s behalf, unless you are authorised to do so
- disclose any information that is confidential orproprietary to the practice, or to any third party that has disclosed information to the practice
- be defamatory, harassing or in violation of any other applicable law
- include confidential or copyrighted information without credit or authority (eg music, videos, text belonging to third parties)
- violate any other applicable policy of the practice.
Monitoring social media sites
The practice’s social media channels are part of our customer service and should be monitored and dealt with regularly.
Social media sites are checked daily. With a one business day minimum response time. All direct message will be responded to with the following statement:
“Thank you for contacting Keys Medical Centre. We request you contact us via email at email@example.com telephone on 03 8759 3807 for a more secure channel of communication. We thank you for your understanding and look forward to hearing from you soon! – Keys Medical Centre”
Social media platforms are updated when necessary (Covid related public health news) or when the practice details have changed. Otherwise content will be uploaded once a month in relation to preventative health campaigns.
The practice complies with AHPRA national law and takes reasonable steps to remove testimonials that advertise their health services (which may include comments about the practitioners themselves). The practice is not responsible for removing (or trying to have removed) unsolicited testimonials published on a third-party website or in social media accounts over which they do not have control.
Personal social media use
Staff are free to personally engage in social media outside of work hours, as long as their actions do not have the potential to bring the practice into disrepute. Employees may not represent personal views expressed as those of this practice.
Any social media posts by staff on their personal social media platforms must not reveal confidential information about the practice or a person who uses the practice (eg staff should not post information relating to patients or other staff, or information concerning the practice’s business operations that have not been made public).
Staff should respect copyright, privacy, fair use, financial disclosure and other applicable laws when publishing on social media platforms.
Breach of policy
All social media activities must be in line with this policy. Company Director Dr Hamid Fairoos will have final approval on all social media content as well as the responsibility of determining action following any breaches to this policy.
Policy review statement
This policy will be reviewed regularly to ensure it is up to date with changes in social media or relevant legislation and staff will be notified in email and or during practice meetings of any changes.
Name of social media officer: Riekie Jooste