Mobile Usage among Clinicians Dips

  Mobile Usage among Clinicians Dips


The Epocrates Mobile Trends Report was released in May 2014 and it offers some very interesting perspectives on adoption of digital technology among clinicians. The complete report can be accessed from here.

The last couple of years saw increased usage of EHR systems arising primarily from regulatory requirements like meaningful use, ICD-10 etc. Apart from traditional computers, care providers across the healthcare spectrum have over the years used smartphones and tablets in care delivery.

Out of the 800-odd physicians surveyed in 2014, only 32% of their EHRs were optimized for mobile-usage – a further dip of 2% from the previous year. On the brighter side, the adoption rate of EHRs is at an all-time high of 84% - a 14% increase from 2012.

Smartphones and tablets definitely offer a lot more flexibility in accessing patient information in a faster and convenient manner. This is something all care providers – physicians, nurse practitioners, and physician assistants seem to reiterate.

Here are some of key takeaways from the report:

  • Computers and Tablets are used for more complex functions like entering patient information, e-prescribing etc. and Smartphones are majorly used for information search.
  • Pharmacists top the list when it comes to information search across computer, smartphone and tablet.
  • 41% of clinicians are “digital omnivores” – they use computer, smartphone and tablet. This number is bound to increase over the years with better integration features.
  • Usage of smartphones and tablets have come down slightly, but this is a temporary effect.
  • There has been a spectrum shift in how digital technology has been applied to provide healthcare. Combined with disruption, innovation and tighter integration exciting things lie ahead.
  • Better User Interface and User Experience will deliver better patient outcomes.
  • Integration among different IT systems is a big need of the hour – ability to access different EHRs, connect with labs and billing systems help tremendously is improving patient outcomes.
  • Now that EHR adoption is more or less achieved, the focus should shift to fine-tuning, optimization and providing a better user experience. This includes optimizing for mobiles, data accessibility across multiple platforms and intuitive features for data entry.

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