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In the News

A sampling of news stories involving the Penn Social Media and Health Innovation Lab.

February, 2015
WBUR Boston's NPR News Station

Can tweets be analyzed to predict heart disease? New research suggests the answer is yes.

January, 2015 Philly

According to new research from Penn, Twitter can be an effective tool for predicting a community’s coronary heart disease rates. Essentially, the angrier your neighbors are, the more likely your arteries are going to clog up.

January, 2015
Penn News

Researchers from the University of Pennsylvania have shown that Twitter can serve as a dashboard indicator of a community’s psychological well being and can predict rates of heart disease.

January, 2015
Association for Psychological Science

Twitter can serve as a dashboard indicator of a community’s psychological well-being and can predict county-level rates of heart disease, according to new research published in Psychological Science.

January, 2015
Fast Company

We've seen before how social networks can be used to predict flu outbreaks. Now comesa study from the University of Pennsylvania showing how Twitter can be used to forecast more serious problems, like heart attacks.

January, 2015

The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) has become one of the first medical specialty societies to issue guidelines on physicians' use of social media.

December, 2014
Fierce Healthcare

The use of social media among U.S. hospitals is greater than previously thought, although its impact on patients and populations remains unknown, according to new research published in JAMA.

December, 2014
The Atlantic

 Tired of condoms and the Pill, many women are turning to new apps that help them practice one of the oldest forms of contraception.

October, 2014
Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics

In a study in the American Journal of Public Health, a team of  researchers analyze patterns of social media disruptions and use during the 2013 Government shutdown that impacted a broad range of federally funded health care services.

October, 2014
Philadelphia Magazine

Raina Merchant, assistant professor of emergency medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, director of the Penn Social Media and Health Innovation Lab, and founder of the MyHeartMap Challenge, was named one of sixteen semifinalists in Philadelphia Magazine's Health Hero Challenge.


The Penn Medicine Center for Health Care Innovation engages interdisciplinary teams to reimagine health care delivery for dramatically better value and patient outcomes.

The Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics (LDI) is Penn's center for research, policy analysis, and education in health systems. Its 200 Senior Fellows analyze the medical, economic, and social issues that influence how health care is organized, financed, managed, and delivered across the U.S.

We are passionate about pursuing impactful research and eager to explore opportunities that will enable a culture of social media and health innovation at Penn, Penn Medicine, and beyond.  Have an idea for a project?  Interested in collaboration?  Click here to learn more about how to contact us.