PR Newswire | 25 Mar, 2014
THIRUVANANTHAPURAM, India: Is social media just about intriguing posts, zany photos, and fun memories? Or can it be used effectively to share health information to members around the world?
Dr.Ashley Mulamoottil, an ophthalmologist who worked with Moorefield Eye Hospital in London and who returned 10 years ago to his hometown Kozhencherry, a tiny village in Kerala, India, asks this very question. Eye Matters, a compilation of postings from Dr.Ashley Mulamoottil's Facebook page rolls out as a book next week lending credence to the efficacy and impact of social media.
As the great-grandson of an Ayurvedic eye physician, Mulamoottil Mathan Mathai Vaidyar (1855-1934) who offered free treatment to patients, Dr.Ashley, who took up allopathic medicine, says social media helps him continue the tradition of offering free medical service at least by the act of sharing medical facts and treatments online.
The responses to his posts are tremendous. Questions about eye health and potential treatments have started coming from all over the world, and in one year Dr.Ashley has became one of the most "liked" doctors on Facebook. In two years he is now covering a wide range of topics and offering information and solutions to eye related problems.
"Because of requests from people, I started posting some medical videos. One day I posted a video of an unusual surgery that showed me removing a 20cm long worm (Loa Loa) from the eyes of a man. Within 48 hours of posting, the video got more than 20,000 shares. Nothing else convinced me as quickly and decisively of the power of social media," says Dr.Ashley. "I got responses to my postings from more than 100 countries."
The widespread interest in health information that is being shared finally pushed Dr.Ashley to publish the collection of posts as a book. Eye Matters published by Invis Multimedia compiles selected postings from the last two years. The doctor surmises that this book is most likely first on health matters that has been put together entirely from FB posts.
Dr.Ashley Mulamoottil is the first, and only, eye surgeon trained to perform Laser Cataract Surgery (Blade-free cataract surgery) in Kerala, India. In fact, he is considered the pioneer of blade-free surgeries in India.