Date: Monday, November 8, 2021
Session Title: Professional Education Poster (1170–1195)
Session Type: Poster Session C
Session Time: 8:30AM-10:30AM
Background/Purpose: Social media has changed the way we communicate and disseminate information. Program directors (PDs) can use social media to boost visibility for professional networking, collaboration, program promotion, recruitment, and medical education at a global scale. Major rheumatology conferences, such as American College of Rheumatology, are beginning to employ social media ambassadors and hashtags to engage followers. Tweets© have been used to discuss findings published in manuscripts, enhancing peer and patient engagement. Increased social media publicity allows researchers to discover useful citations which they may have missed. The Kardashian index (K-index) can be used to study the correlation between the number of citations for a physician and the number of followers they have on Twitter©. The goal of this study was to analyze the presence and use of Twitter© by rheumatology PDs in the United States (US).
Methods: The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education website was accessed to obtain a list of accredited rheumatology fellowships in the US and all PDs were included. Demographic data, publications, citations and h index were collected using publicly available sources: program websites, Doximity©, Healthgrades© and Scopus©. A Twitter-based search was conducted to collect numbers of followers. The K-index = Ft/F, Ft is the number of followers a physician has on Twitter©, and F is the number of followers a physician should have based on the that physician’s number of citations (C). The F factor = 43.3 (C)0.32. Nonparametric statistics including Mann-Whitney U and Kruskal-Wallis tests were used to compare differences between groups.
Results: A total of 121 PDs were included. The average age was 52.69±9.17 years, 61 (50.4%) were females, 33 had Twitter© accounts, 11 had more than 100 followers and 10 had less than 10 followers. Active followers ranged from 0 to 1964. The mean±standard deviation (median) number of publications, citations and h-index for PDs were 31.98±45.47 (14), 1344.21±3035.96 (384) and 11.94±13.05 (8). There was no statistical difference between male and female PDs as well as between American and international medical graduates with regards to the distribution of publications (p=0.108; p=0.261), citations (p=0.204; p=0.367) and h-index (p=0.12; =0.337). Their average K-index was 0.864 (SD = 1.75) with a range from 0 to 7.72. There was no significant difference between male and female PDs with Twitter© on their K-index (MW U = 103.00, p = 0.287) or based on location of training (MW U = 108.50, p = 0.434).
Conclusion: A higher K-index suggests a physician may be over celebrated due to his/her active presence on social media. Physicians with a K-index > 5 are considered to be “Kardashians” of the academic world. As only 1 PD had an index > 5, we observed that with most PDs, the Kardashian phenomenon does not exist. Lack of social media presence represents an underutilized resource for PDs, as having an active professional Twitter© account can be used for program highlights, networking and professional advancement.
To cite this abstract in AMA style:Khanna A, Gopalakrishnan K, Czarny D, Quigley B, Kwiatkowski A. The Kardashian Index of Rheumatology Program Directors: Comparing Scholarly Activity and Twitter Use of Rheumatology Fellowship Program Directors in the United States [abstract]. Arthritis Rheumatol. 2021; 73 (suppl 9). https://acrabstracts.org/abstract/the-kardashian-index-of-rheumatology-program-directors-comparing-scholarly-activity-and-twitter-use-of-rheumatology-fellowship-program-directors-in-the-united-states/. Accessed June 2, 2023.
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ACR Meeting Abstracts - https://acrabstracts.org/abstract/the-kardashian-index-of-rheumatology-program-directors-comparing-scholarly-activity-and-twitter-use-of-rheumatology-fellowship-program-directors-in-the-united-states/