We’ve been monitoring Google+ for a little while now, but it’s our very own VIVA! Principal, Kirsten Bruce, who is leading Team VIVA! by embracing the social movement and taking the widely publicised platform for a test drive.

Kirsten Bruce on Google+ - Images from L-R: Kirsten with celebrity nutritionist, Dr Joanna McMillan Price & three-time Olympian, Melinda Gainsford-Taylor, Australia’s Governor General and NCWA Patron, Her Excellency Ms Quentin Bryce, AC and Behind-the-scenes at Marie Claire photo shoot.

Kirsten is now sharing her insights on Google+ into life as Principal of an award-winning and dynamic health and wellness communications agency.

According to Kirsten, one of the most useful tools on Google+ for healthcare communicators is the Hangout function.

“VIVA! is the exclusive Australian partner to the world’s largest independent group of PR agencies dedicated to health – known as GLOBALHealthPR – and the Hangout tool in Google+ is the perfect way to communicate with teams world-wide.

“There’s a lot of planning, research and creative energy that goes into developing a health communications campaign, and for the first time I’m also inviting my circles on Google+ to check out behind-the-scenes photos, videos and stories on a range of VIVA! health and wellbeing projects,” Kirsten said.

VIVA! has also been sharing ideas and learning about Google+ from our friends on twitter.

Every Sunday night VIVA! joins healthcare professionals, health researchers, public health advocates and students for a live twitter chat on emerging health and social media concepts. The HCSMANZ (Health & social media in Australia & NZ) discussion is open to all twitter users and is a great way to share ideas on hot topics, such as the benefits of Google+ for the health sector.

Here’s an overview of some of the comments from the recent live chat:
– The group would like to see google maps & SMS facilities on Google Plus (think of the real-time benefits during disaster response)
– Google+ could lead to an emergence of rural health hubs, as health professionals begin to monitor and analyse health trends via social media
– There is also some talk of google allowing brands to integrate their company web design into their google + page, mirroring official homepages and becoming more recognisable by health consumers

For more info and to read the full transcript see the HCSMANZ blog.

What are your thoughts on Google+ for the health sector? Send us a comment below or chat to us on twitter.