Could a local social media hub help newly diagnosed people manage their MS?


Previous research has shown social media hubs can be a useful resource for people with long-term conditions to exchange information and get support on how to manage their own condition. And previous projects in other conditions, like kidney conditions and rheumatic conditions, found local social media networks were effective in educating and supporting people with these long-term conditions. 

That’s important because there’s evidence that helping people manage their own condition can improve things like self-care and quality of life.

About the project

That’s why the researchers are now developing and testing a new social media hub help newly diagnosed people with MS in Greater Manchester. They're developing this hub together with the help of people with MS and healthcare professionals.

Once set up, the hub will be also moderated by people with MS and MS healthcare professionals. Because it’s tailored specifically for people in Greater Manchester, it’ll give people newly diagnosed with MS the opportunity to receive accurate information and education relevant to their location. And allow them to connect with other people living with MS in their area.

The researchers will test if the hub can:

  1. Help provide information and support to people who recently got diagnosed with MS 
  2. Improve how much recently diagnosed people are aware of and understand their own health 
  3. Help improve how well newly diagnosed people with MS can manage their condition themselves

How will it help people with MS?

The researchers hope that ultimately, locally-tailored hubs will help newly diagnosed people with MS understand their condition better, reduce anxiety and develop self-management strategies to improve their health.

Through the hub, people may receive accurate information and support more quickly, which could reduce strains on local healthcare services.