Discussions

Facebook closed groups

Posted by Carol Vassar @vassarradio, Feb 9, 2018

Hi all: My organization is looking to do closed Facebook groups. Does anyone have experience in this area? Anyone have policies, procedures, guidelines that they have found successful and are willing to share? Thanks!

@lucybordewick

We had something new come up in our Cancer support group on Facebook last week. A mental health counselor that appears to provide services to cancer patients virtually, joined our group and tried to solicit for patients/customers. We also had someone from outside of our community/region join and ask for donations for a camp for kids with a parent with cancer. Obviously neither were offensive, but we decided we don't want this to mushroom and deleted the posts and added new verbiage about no solicitation or requests for financial support. It seems obvious now, but we did not include that in our terms of use initially. I'll be adding a question to each of our groups, too, just to give people cause around joining our group for these purposes.

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All of our groups are closed, but we do not really 'screen' prior to accepting people. We accept most everyone on their word that they are appropriate for the group. This is the first time we have had to remove a post or reference our terms of use.

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@lucybordewick

We had something new come up in our Cancer support group on Facebook last week. A mental health counselor that appears to provide services to cancer patients virtually, joined our group and tried to solicit for patients/customers. We also had someone from outside of our community/region join and ask for donations for a camp for kids with a parent with cancer. Obviously neither were offensive, but we decided we don't want this to mushroom and deleted the posts and added new verbiage about no solicitation or requests for financial support. It seems obvious now, but we did not include that in our terms of use initially. I'll be adding a question to each of our groups, too, just to give people cause around joining our group for these purposes.

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As your group grows you may want to do a little more screening by adding those questions before you accept them, @lucybordewick. Do you pin a welcome to the community post? If you see more of this happening, you can add a caution about selling and self-promotion there. However, what you've done may be enough. No need to over-react to a single instance. (By the way, pinned posts have recently become more visible on mobile — a good thing!)

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@lucybordewick

We had something new come up in our Cancer support group on Facebook last week. A mental health counselor that appears to provide services to cancer patients virtually, joined our group and tried to solicit for patients/customers. We also had someone from outside of our community/region join and ask for donations for a camp for kids with a parent with cancer. Obviously neither were offensive, but we decided we don't want this to mushroom and deleted the posts and added new verbiage about no solicitation or requests for financial support. It seems obvious now, but we did not include that in our terms of use initially. I'll be adding a question to each of our groups, too, just to give people cause around joining our group for these purposes.

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Thanks, @DanHinmon. Great ideas!

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Jumping in REALLY late here, but I run a closed group on Facebook for Graves'/thyroid patients, so am happy to answer questions!

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Howdy…I have been helping Greenville Health System with Closed Facebook Groups for about 6 years. We modeled them after University Maryland Medical Center and Ed Bennett's approach. We use them for our cancer support groups specifically around wellness and nutrition and they are extremely successful. We have created a triage approach with release forms that allows us to grant access for the patient, educate the patients in the group with community standards, and keep all the compliancy in check. I am happy to share our best practices including how we wrote release forms, how we triaged and educated the patients before granting access, and how we empowered the clinicians and dietitians to moderate the groups.

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@bobbyrettew

Howdy…I have been helping Greenville Health System with Closed Facebook Groups for about 6 years. We modeled them after University Maryland Medical Center and Ed Bennett's approach. We use them for our cancer support groups specifically around wellness and nutrition and they are extremely successful. We have created a triage approach with release forms that allows us to grant access for the patient, educate the patients in the group with community standards, and keep all the compliancy in check. I am happy to share our best practices including how we wrote release forms, how we triaged and educated the patients before granting access, and how we empowered the clinicians and dietitians to moderate the groups.

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Thanks for sharing your experience here, @bobbyrettew. Can you share any key learnings about how you empowered clinicians and dietitians to moderate the groups?

I hope you'll join us for our July 24 webinar: How to Start and Grow a Successful Facebook Support Group. https://socialmedia.mayoclinic.org/webinar/how-to-start-and-grow-a-successful-facebook-patient-support-group/

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@bobbyrettew

Howdy…I have been helping Greenville Health System with Closed Facebook Groups for about 6 years. We modeled them after University Maryland Medical Center and Ed Bennett's approach. We use them for our cancer support groups specifically around wellness and nutrition and they are extremely successful. We have created a triage approach with release forms that allows us to grant access for the patient, educate the patients in the group with community standards, and keep all the compliancy in check. I am happy to share our best practices including how we wrote release forms, how we triaged and educated the patients before granting access, and how we empowered the clinicians and dietitians to moderate the groups.

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@DanHinmon – Good morning and how are you? Thanks so much for reaching out! I wish I could take credit for encouraging clinicians and dietitians to engage…they approached the social media team with this request. One of the nurse practitioners attended a conference where he was interested to reach and engage patients of all geographic barriers. He came back with the idea, this is where I researched who had experience best practices; I thought of @edbennett. We spent a few months to intentionally research the idea, consulted with compliance and developed a plan. As we began operationalizing the idea, the dietitians made the recommendation that we train/educate the patients during their first visit. This allows us to include the release forms with the other paperwork, then during triage…used their phone to get them into the group, share best practices, and explain the community. Everyone in GHS's CIOS were partners with the goal to reach patients no matter their geographical barrier.

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@bobbyrettew

Howdy…I have been helping Greenville Health System with Closed Facebook Groups for about 6 years. We modeled them after University Maryland Medical Center and Ed Bennett's approach. We use them for our cancer support groups specifically around wellness and nutrition and they are extremely successful. We have created a triage approach with release forms that allows us to grant access for the patient, educate the patients in the group with community standards, and keep all the compliancy in check. I am happy to share our best practices including how we wrote release forms, how we triaged and educated the patients before granting access, and how we empowered the clinicians and dietitians to moderate the groups.

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Very interesting. Sounds like you were fortunate to have a forward-thinking, engaged group. Nice work!

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Here is a huge game changer for Facebook Groups…imagine using this functionality for support groups! https://techcrunch.com/2018/07/25/facebook-what-is-a-watch-party/

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@bobbyrettew

Here is a huge game changer for Facebook Groups…imagine using this functionality for support groups! https://techcrunch.com/2018/07/25/facebook-what-is-a-watch-party/

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I've been reading about the Watch Party function, @bobbyrettew but puzzled about how to apply it to patient support groups. Why are you calling it a game changer? Interested in learning more about this.

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