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Patient Voices: #TwitterDisco

Dance like you’re in your own kitchen:
#TwitterDisco does Patient Voices

‘A time to weep… a time to mourn… a time to laugh… and there is a time to dance.’

#TwitterDisco started with three friends and colleagues who work in the NHS sharing and posting music they love to listen to. In December 2016, the friends decided to open up the concept of a ‘virtual music fest’ by holding virtual discotheques, where participants could post and share their love of music while raising funds for three charities – the Cavell Nurse’s Trust, the British Lung Foundation and the Sepsis Trust.

#TwitterDisco has since gained a cult following! People from the NHS, other health and care systems, community groups, volunteers, families and carers join in to connect. They share their love of music, and they form online and off-line friendships.

#TwitterDisco isn’t a theory, idea or event. It doesn’t exist as words in a book or an idea in someone’s head.  #TwitterDisco is an experience, it happens when people connect and music flows.

For most people, #TwitterDisco is just a great way of connecting, sharing, letting off some steam and having fun, but for others it has had a more profound and positive impact upon their health and wellbeing:

‘The first time I have danced since age 18, I rarely venture out alone, thanks for your kindness, connecting, sharing and for all the great music.’

‘I haven’t laughed as much in years.’

‘I can’t get out the house due to my caring responsibilities, but love joining in and listening to the #TwitterDisco.’

Want know more? Want to join in? Check out the latest about #TwitterDisco.

These digital stories, exploring the value of social media in healthcare staff experience, were created in a Patient Voices workshop supported by the Michael J. Smalroch Foundation.

Angela’s story explores the value of supportive real and virtual communities.

The boy who raised hope
How do we acknowledge a full and creative life?
How do we come to terms with loss?
How do we honour a life lost?
Zoë does this with honesty, dignity, and a plea that healthcare staff are empowered so that they can provide the best care for patients and families.

Man in the street
Mike’s journey from man in the street to man on #TwitterDisco began with his cancer diagnosis and moved forwards and upwards as he explored the patient experience, patient involvement, patient engagement and, finally, the mutually supportive and safe social media space of #TwitterDisco.

Finding my voice
The life of a GP is becoming ever more complex, demands ever more time and ever more knowledge. Meeting those challenges needs the confidence to be heard – a confidence that may not come to all of us easily and a voice that we may only find through surprising routes.

The mood for dancing
When you spend your working life holding space for others, sometimes you just want to go home and curl up in your own space, and leave the world outside. Even on those nights, John finds that the virtual space of #TwitterDisco can provide a real place of comfort, support – and fun!

Dance with the music
Music is a thread that runs through our lives. Sometimes it sleeps, unheard, while the noise of life drowns it out. Then, when we need it, it comes back through unexpected places like #TwitterDisco to lift us when we most need to dance with it.

Unashamedly me
When life turns inwards, the walls close in, it gets darker and your menu of life options is reduced to a choice of one, what is the way out and back to moving forward? #Twitterdisco and the support of others help Ruth through the complexity of the being a socially and clinically committed GP – and other challenges – to become able to finally be “Unashamedly me”.

Want to make your own stories?

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