Social Media: The Blurring of Professional Boundaries

Course Description:

Social media has become a great way to connect with people, but in the healthcare profession, social networking can often blur the ethical lines in a patient-provider relationship. Postings on Facebook and similar sites have cost some healthcare professionals their jobs and some others have even lost their license to practice. Program faculty will explore the issues which make social media a potential liability for healthcare providers and discuss ways to teach professionals how to avoid the misuse of this new media.

Note: This course was originally delivered as a satellite broadcast.

Target Audience

Academic Faculty/Staff, Federal Government Employees, State Government Employees, Local Government Employees, Non-Government Employees and Students

Learning Objectives

  • Describe the use of social media in healthcare
  • Explain the difference between privacy and confidentiality
  • Name at least three of the six Principles for Social Networking
  • Identify one consequence of violating one’s professional boundaries
Course summary
Available credit: 
  • 2.00 Participation/CE
    Tulane Professional and Continuing Education (PaCE) awards 2.00 hour(s) of credit for completing Social Media: The Blurring of Professional Boundaries
Course opens: 
Course expires: 


Carllene MacMillan

Carllene MacMillan, RN, MSN

Ms. MacMillan is on the Louisiana State Board of Nursing (LSBN) and has served as the Chair of the Compliance Committee and on the Settlement Committee. During these periods of service the issue of the misuse of social media was noted in an increasing number of practice violations. In 2009 she was accepted into the National Council of State Boards of Nursing Institute of Regulatory Excellence Program with a project focus on Social Media Violations. She is currently in the Executive Leadership Track of the Loyola University Doctor of Nursing Practice Program with a capstone project focused on Social Media and Nursing. Ms. MacMillan has given multiple presentations as the LSBN representative and as an individual for various nursing groups such as colleges and other regional and national healthcare organizations. Her message is not punitive but focused on how we as professionals, administrators, and educators can manage the use of this technology.

Available Credit

  • 2.00 Participation/CE
    Tulane Professional and Continuing Education (PaCE) awards 2.00 hour(s) of credit for completing Social Media: The Blurring of Professional Boundaries


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Required Hardware/software

System Settings 
This course is designed to work most effectively if your computer and internet connection meet certain minimal requirements. This course can be accessed using a Windows 10 PC or a Mac with High Sierra1, Mojave, or Catalina. Pop-up blockers should be disabled when viewing the course. Internet Explorer 11 (for Windows 10), or the current version of Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, or Apple Safari (for Windows 10 and or Mac) is required. Many of our courses require Java and JavaScript enabled. 

Links to External Websites   
Links to websites outside this course will open in a new window or tab. Some browsers may minimize the course window. If this occurs, maximize the course window to return to the course. 

Adobe Acrobat Reader (for desktops and laptops)  
Adobe Acrobat Reader is required to access some documents in this course. If you need to download a free copy of Acrobat Reader, click here.  

Internet Connection Speed 
A minimum download speed of 1.5 Mbps is recommended for an optimal experience, which is commonly the speed associated with a basic DSL or a cellular/satellite connection. A faster connection, such as cable or fiber service, with further enhance your online experience. A Wi-Fi connection is generally acceptable, but it is dependent upon one of the two services mentioned above. You can check your internet connection speed at