Paper Type

Complete

Paper Number

1759

Description

This paper investigates whether and what kind of social support exchange in Professional-only Online Health Communities (POHC). Focusing on the recent fast-growing outbreak—Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)— we find that healthcare professionals benefit from peer social support in POHCs, particularly by exchanging emotional support and learning from collective experience-based knowledge. Using the Reddit/r/medicine data, we show that posts’ popularity varies depending on the authors’ emotions and informativeness. In particular, a post’s negative emotion and narrative tone have a significant and positive association with the post’s popularity. These findings speak to the important role of POHC associated with healthcare professionals’ integrity during the pandemic.

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Aug 10th, 12:00 AM

Professional Peer Support in Online Health Communities

This paper investigates whether and what kind of social support exchange in Professional-only Online Health Communities (POHC). Focusing on the recent fast-growing outbreak—Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)— we find that healthcare professionals benefit from peer social support in POHCs, particularly by exchanging emotional support and learning from collective experience-based knowledge. Using the Reddit/r/medicine data, we show that posts’ popularity varies depending on the authors’ emotions and informativeness. In particular, a post’s negative emotion and narrative tone have a significant and positive association with the post’s popularity. These findings speak to the important role of POHC associated with healthcare professionals’ integrity during the pandemic.

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