FDA Hosts Twitter Chat to Discuss Health App Regulation

Wednesday I came across a Google+ post by Nick Dawson, saying that the FDA was about to host a Twitter Chat on Health Apps and regulation. When I blinked away my disbelief, I was excited to see how they would conduct the chat and, foray as if for the first time, into our turf of social media. It’s common knowledge around online health communities that the FDA has been on pause, at a stand-still, with regards to presenting their regulations for healthcare companies in the social media space. So to see that they decided to use social media to announce regulation for new health technology felt strange and a bit ironic. But who were we to argue – this is exactly the sort of engagement we hope to encourage and, in that – I think, our chat responses were generally positive and inquisitive when they could have veered into indignant and frustrated. I was particularly excited to learn more about health app regulation especially in light of our recent webinar on the topic – when one of the questions came up about regulation and how app creators and users should react. FDA, your response came at the perfect time for our audience and I eagerly await your answers to more questions (off of Twitter this time – you can submit questions to the FDA App team until October. Check out the draft of the guidance document here for more info). While it seemed that the FDA had a bit of trouble keeping up with the frantic pace of a Twitter chat (something many of us can relate to!), I hope it wasn’t too daunting that they won’t try it again soon. As health consumers, and educated, passionate ones at that, we look to the FDA to keep us safe and informed. It was wonderful to have them at the table and share what information they could. Please check out the awesome recap that Tayla wrote yesterday after the chat. She did an excellent job of highlighting the chronology of the chat and some of the key participants as well as explain how the FDA plans to regulate these apps. –Amanda

Jump to Tayla’s Storify Recap!