NINDS has created a stroke awareness fan page on the very popular Facebook web site in an attempt to reach as many people as possible with critical stroke messages and resources through this interactive, community platform.
The fan page is part of the NINDS Know Stroke campaign that was launched in May 2001 to educate the public about the signs of stroke and encourage people to seek treatment quickly when the signs occur.
Through Facebook, NINDS staff hope to:
- Extend the Know Stroke campaign messages to a broader online community;
- Support stroke education efforts by providing accessible online resources;
- Enable users to share their stories and ideas, locate information, learn about stroke activities, access educational materials, and learn from NIH and each other about ways to raise stroke awareness in their communities;
- Discover new partners for educational activities.
The Know Stroke page complements information on the newly revamped NINDS public web site http://stroke.nih.gov by providing timely news and event listings and encouraging dialogue among fans through discussion boards and photo postings.
This recent sample post demonstrates what a vital role this site can play in getting accurate and up-to-date information to the public: “….good to know the word is getting out there... It made me cry. I wish I had seen it before my dad had his stroke. I would have been more proactive in my actions speaking to him on the phone in North Carolina from Maryland. I would have not let a nurse at the eye doctor’s tell me that ‘they didn’t know him and the ophthalmologist needs to see him first’ when he had sudden blindness.”
Although most NIH staffers cannot access Facebook at work, many are looking at the site from their homes. Facebook users can join the fan page by visiting www.facebook.com/KnowStroke and clicking on “Become a Fan.”