twitter_2012In 2014 we published a list of the Most Followed #FOAMed Twitter Users (FOAM = Free Open Access Meducation). One observation, keenly pointed out by Dr. Nikita Joshi (@njoshi8), was the lack of female representation on the list. Separately, Dr. Esther Choo (@choo_ek) published a blog post entitled Women in Emergency Medicine Who Give Great Talks. As a follow up to our original post, here are the most ‘followed’ women on Twitter in the FOAM world.

We are particularly interested in understanding the landscape such as who is involved, geographic locations, areas of expertise, and association with blogs/podcasts. Our search strategy was simple:

  1. Twitter was searched for all users with #FOAMed, #FOAMcc, #FOAMtox, #FOAMped, #FOAMems, #FOAM4GP, and/or #FOAM in her Twitter profile. *
  2. This was cross-referenced with Dr. Mike Cadogan’s (@sandnsurf) FOAMed Twitter list (1,074 members as of May 8, 2015).

Most Followed FOAM Women on Twitter **

RankTwitter NameTwitter HandleLocation ***FollowersJoined Twitter
1Michelle Lin@M_LinSan Francisco, USA9,917Apr 2009
2Pam Nelmes@Pam007NelmesCornwall, UK4,631Sep 2010
3Michelle Johnston@EleytheriusPerth4,561Feb 2010
4Natalie May@_NMayManchester, United Kingdom4,036Jul 2012
5gas-and-air doc@mjslabbertRSA, UK, Toronto Canada3,360Aug 2010
6ER doc@ER_doc3,322Jun 2008
7Lauren Westafer@lwestaferNew England, United States2,912Apr 2012
8Teresa Chan@TChanMDCanada (Hamilton, ON)2,882Jun 2009
9Natalie Lafferty@nlaffertyDundee, UK2,640Mar 2008
10ER Nurses Care@ERnursescareNorth Carolina2,595Apr 2009
11Deirdre Bonnycastle@BonnycastleSaskatoon, Sask, Canada2,494Oct 2008
12Heidi Allen@dreamingspiresSydney, Australia2,443Oct 2008
13Esther Choo MD MPH@choo_ek2,198Jan 2012
14Jess@EMS_JunkieAustralia2,169Oct 2009
15Nikita Joshi@njoshi8California2,103Dec 2012
16Laleh Gharahbaghian@SonoSpotSan Francisco/Stanford1,966May 2012
17Tessa Davis@TessaRDavisSydney1,849Oct 2011
18K Dillon, RDMS, CPC@comalliwritesSF Bay Area, CA1,748Nov 2009
19Penny Wilson@nomadicgpWestern Australia1,724Mar 2012
20Madhu Singh MD@thinkalotPale Blue Dot1,645Mar 2009
21Victoria Stephen@EMcardiacJohannesburg, South Africa1,619Nov 2012
22Annalisa Manca@AnnalisaMancaDundee, Scotland1,556Feb 2009
23Eve Purdy@purdy_eve1,474Jul 2012
24Sara Ali@TheNewbieDoctor1,213May 2010
25Melanie Considine@ruralgreengpRural South Australia1,174Nov 2011
26Petra Dolman@petradMDPrince George, BC, Canada1,156May 2013
27Shannon O. McNamara@ShannonOMacNew York, NY1,100Jun 2009
28Cathi Mon@cathimonSouth Australia1,089Aug 2011
29Jordana Haber@JoJoHaberBrooklyn, NY959Mar 2012
30Shweta Gidwani@Global_EMLondon942Feb 2009

* Those without one of the FOAM hashtags in her Twitter profile are not included on this list, even if they produce excellent, free content such as Victoria Brazil (@SocraticEM), Megan Ranney, MD MPH (@meganranney), and Ash Witt (@ash_witt).

** Information current as of May 8, 2015.

*** Locations were taken directly from Twitter profiles.


Certainly, the metric of Twitter followers does not necessarily correlate with quality, and it misses newcomers to the FOAM scene and those with a more focused area of expertise/interest.


  • There is worldwide representation from Australia, Canada, the UK, South Africa, the USA, and more.
  • A variety of healthcare professional representation including emergency physicians, nurses, and general practitioners.
  • Subspecialties within Emergency Medicine are also well represented including pediatrics, public health, medical education, simulation, and ultrasound.

It’s amazing to be part of such a great FOAM community with its breadth of expertise and diversity.

Future Direction

Others have noted the lack of gender diversity in the community and have sought solutions. Dr. Petra Dolman (@petradMD) launched a twitter account (@feMedchat) and hashtag (#feMed) dedicated to discussing issues relevant to women in medicine with regular twitter chats, article discussion, and potential mentoring opportunities. This is sure to become an area to follow for future growth and opportunity.

Original August 30, 2014; Updated May 8, 2015

Bryan D. Hayes, PharmD, DABAT, FAACT, FASHP

Bryan D. Hayes, PharmD, DABAT, FAACT, FASHP

Leadership Team, ALiEM
Creator and Lead Editor, Capsules and EM Pharm Pearls Series
Attending Pharmacist, EM and Toxicology, MGH
Associate Professor of EM, Division of Medical Toxicology, Harvard Medical School
Bryan D. Hayes, PharmD, DABAT, FAACT, FASHP


EM Pharmacist & Toxicologist @MassGeneralEM | Asst Prof @HarvardMed/@EMRES_MGHBWH | @ALiEMteam leadership | Capsules creator, ALiEMU | President, ABAT | #FOAMed
Nikita Joshi, MD

Nikita Joshi, MD

ALiEM Chief People Officer and Associate Editor
Clinical Instructor
Department of Emergency Medicine
Stanford University
Nikita Joshi, MD


Emergency Medicine Doctor Associate Editor of ALiEM Gun Sense Advocate #FOAMed #Docs4GunSense #MomsDemandAction Tweets represent my own views and opinions