Rob Fraser, 29, is passionate about the many ways technology can be used to impact health. Specifically, he leverages technology to enhance the impact of research, education, service delivery, and behavior change. Inducted into STTI in 2009 (Lambda Pi at-Large Chapter, Toronto, Ontario, Canada), Fraser knows well the benefits of membership with respect to achieving his professional goals. “Sigma has helped me by developing my ability to conduct and disseminate research,” he says. “I have had the opportunity to present at conferences, write articles, as well as publish a book.”
Fraser’s book is titled The Nurse’s Social Media Advantage. Published by STTI in 2011, it is the only book about social media written specifically for nurses. “I started my work when I noticed very few clinicians and researchers were using publicly available tools like social media to disseminate their work or improve their practice,” says Fraser. “I saw there was a great opportunity for patient education, knowledge mobilization, and organizational transformation using these tools.”
While Fraser is the sole author of the book, he is quick to acknowledge the many people who aided in its creation. “Locally my [STTI] chapter provided workshops that were helpful for advancing my knowledge of research and writing skills, which helped me work on journal articles and professional publications,” he says. Fraser also forged significant partnerships globally. “I’ve found the ability to network and collaborate with peers to be the most useful part [of STTI],”says Fraser. “I have learned a lot from attending conferences and connecting with others interested in similar populations, illness, and research areas. I’ve collaborated with people I have never met in person and found great opportunities to publish information that helps other professionals. The staff at the organization has also been a great asset. While writing my book they provided a lot of guidance and support in the development of ideas and concepts that I integrated into The Nurse’s Social Media Advantage.”
Given Fraser’s interests and expertise, his participation on STTI’s Technology and Innovation Task Force was a natural fit. During his service, Fraser discussed how STTI might better leverage digital tools like The Circle to help nurses improve their practice. “It is very exciting to see opportunities to take on large challenges that we continue to face in healthcare by using new tools or techniques for the problems we face as clinicians,” Fraser says.
Currently Fraser continues to explore how social media can influence the healthcare landscape, even outside of his clinical role on research and technology development. As adjunct assistant professor at the Western University in London, Canada, he and other professors are researching social media’s impact on public health in both Canada and the United States. Fraser also works with Swift Medical developing a mobile app for measurement, assessment, and documentation of wounds. “I’m very excited about the future of healthcare and how nurses can shape it.”