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American Medical News: Physician smartphone popularity shifts health IT

Posted on | August 28, 2010 | No Comments

PAMELA LEWIS DOLAN
American Medical News:  amednews staff. Posted Aug. 23, 2010.

Doctors’ embrace of such devices puts them at a disconnect with hospitals that rely on desktop-based health technology.
With physician smartphone use nearing a saturation point, doctors are in an unfamiliar position when it comes to health information technology — demanding that others adapt to their needs, rather than the other way around.

Physicians’ rapid embrace of mobile devices — well beyond the rate the general population uses them, as measured by several surveys — has caught many involved in health information technology off-guard. That’s particularly true of hospitals, which report being besieged by physician demands that electronic clinical information systems be available through their BlackBerrys or iPhones.


“Five to 10 years ago they were saying, ‘If only my docs would be using computers,’ ” said C. Peter Waegemann, vice president for development of the mHealth Initiative, a Boston-based organization that promotes mobile technology in health care. Now hospital executives bemoan the fact that doctors are “using these smartphones all the time … and I don’t know how to integrate it,” he said.

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