Ashley D. Pekic is ASA Public Relations Associate.

Ashley D. Pekic is ASA Public Relations Associate.

ASA members are aware of the impact social media can have within the health care community. Social media was instrumental to the success of the Safe VA Care campaign, and hashtags like #ILookLikeASurgeon have shed light on gender inequality in the workplace. While ASA’s advancement of the society’s social media presence on Twitter and Facebook has been highly successful (just check out the #ANES18 conference tweets), our focus has progressed to include another platform: Instagram. Instagram is a photo-sharing app that allows for visual storytelling through user photos and short videos.

The motivation behind the effort to ramp up ASA’s Instagram presence is simple. According to Hootsuite, 1 billion people are on Instagram, with 500 million of them using the app every day. There are 25 million business profiles, and 75 percent of businesses in the United States use Instagram. Additionally, we have seen ASA members, both early-career and attending physicians, become increasingly involved in this online community, not just personally but professionally.

One way ASA is enhancing its presence on the platform is by hosting monthly ASA Instagram “takeovers” on the @asa_hq Instagram account. One day per month, a social media-savvy ASA member takes over the ASA Instagram account by posting photos and videos from a day in their life as a physician anesthesiologist. The response has been overwhelmingly positive, with the majority of takeovers resulting in more than 400 likes and 4,000 story views. One takeover even yielded more than 17,000 story views! These takeovers allow us to show the diversity of membership, and our followers are excited to see behind-the-scene experiences through the eyes of our members. Each month, we increase awareness about the specialty and promote the role of physician anesthesiologists.

Hosting these takeovers not only advances the society, it offers a mutually beneficial partnership. While holding the ASA Instagram handle for a 24-hour period, you have an opportunity to share your unique perspective as a physician anesthesiologist in whatever stage you are at in your career, from resident to attending physician, while reaching a broad audience. It’s your chance to build relationships within the health care community by sharing what you do each day with the world.

Kenisha Muse, M.D., networks in Washington, D.C.

Kenisha Muse, M.D., networks in Washington, D.C.

For example, you can stress the importance of maintaining physical and mental health, like Alicia Warlick, M.D., who starts each day with a morning workout. Showcase professional advocacy endeavors by sharing insights into your meeting with a legislator, like Chad Greene, D.O., did on Capitol Hill. You can also highlight evening networking events as Kenisha Muse, M.D., did while mingling at a recent Women in Government Relations and Washington Women in Public Relations rooftop mixer.

Chad Greene, D.O., advocates for patients on Capitol Hill.

Chad Greene, D.O., advocates for patients on Capitol Hill.

These personal connections disseminate knowledge, increase public awareness and highlight accomplishments achieved by you, your colleagues and institutions. Sharing your experience is a great way to recruit medical students and residents interested in entering the field of anesthesiology and can also alleviate the fears of patients who may be about to undergo anesthesia.

Are you interested in taking over the ASA Instagram account? If so, we’d like to hear from you! Send your name, member ID and a short bio to Ashley Pekic, ASA Public Relations Associate, at a.pekic@asahq.org. Include your Instagram handle, as well as any of your other social media handles, and what you would like to share on your takeover day. To check out other examples of previous takeovers, visit instagram.com/asa_hq. Spread the word and be on the lookout for our 2019 takeovers!

Hosting these takeovers not only advances the society, it offers a mutually beneficial partnership. While holding the ASA Instagram handle for a 24-hour period, you have an opportunity to share your unique perspective as a physician anesthesiologist in whatever stage you are at in your career, from resident to attending physician, while reaching a broad audience.

Alicia Warlick, M.D., promotes a balanced lifestyle.

Alicia Warlick, M.D., promotes a balanced lifestyle.