Advertisement

Journal of Medical Systems

, 37:9903 | Cite as

Mobile Tablet Use among Academic Physicians and Trainees

  • Joseph Sclafani
  • Timothy F. Tirrell
  • Orrin I. Franko
Original Paper

Abstract

The rapid adoption rate and integration of mobile technology (tablet computing devices and smartphones) by physicians is reshaping the current clinical landscape. These devices have sparked an evolution in a variety of arenas, including educational media dissemination, remote patient data access and point of care applications. Quantifying usage patterns of clinical applications of mobile technology is of interest to understand how these technologies are shaping current clinical care. A digital survey examining mobile tablet and associated application usage was administered via email to all ACGME training programs. Data regarding respondent specialty, level of training, and habits of tablet usage were collected and analyzed. 40 % of respondents used a tablet, of which the iPad was the most popular. Nearly half of the tablet owners reported using the tablet in clinical settings; the most commonly used application types were point of care and electronic medical record access. Increased level of training was associated with decreased support for mobile computing improving physician capabilities and patient interactions. There was strong and consistent desire for institutional support of mobile computing and integration of mobile computing technology into medical education. While many physicians are currently purchasing mobile devices, often without institutional support, successful integration of these devices into the clinical setting is still developing. Potential reasons behind the low adoption rate may include interference of technology in doctor-patient interactions or the lack of appropriate applications available for download. However, the results convincingly demonstrate that physicians recognize a potential utility in mobile computing, indicated by their desire for institutional support and integration of mobile technology into medical education. It is likely that the use of tablet computers in clinical practice will expand in the future. Thus, we believe medical institutions, providers, educators, and developers should collaborate in ways that enhance the efficacy, reliability, and safety of integrating these devices into daily medical practice.

Keywords

Tablet Technology Mobile computing mHealth 

Notes

Disclosures

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Funding

None

Supplementary material

10916_2012_9903_MOESM1_ESM.docx (4.4 mb)
ESM 1 (DOCX 4478 kb)

References

  1. 1.
    Peck, A. D., App-solutely fabulous. Hundreds of new apps for iPAD and tablets make mHealth a reality and a lifestyle choice. Med. Econ. 88(22):S11–S14, 2011.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Collins, F., How to fulfill the true promise of “mHealth”: Mobile devices have the potential to become powerful medical tools. Sci. Am. 307(1):16, 2012.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Martin, S., MD’s computer, PDA use on the upswing. CMAJ 167(7):794, 2002.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Carney, P. A., Poor, D. A., Schifferdecker, K. E., Gephart, D. S., Brooks, W. B., and Nierenberg, D. W., Computer use among community-based primary care physician preceptors. Acad. Med. 79(6):580–590, 2004.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Garritty, C., and El, E. K., Who’s using PDAs? Estimates of PDA use by health care providers: A systematic review of surveys. J. Med. Internet Res. 8(2):e7, 2006.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Burt, C. W., and Sisk, J. E., Which physicians and practices are using electronic medical records? Health Aff. (Millwood) 24(5):1334–1343, 2005.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    DesRoches, C. M., Campbell, E. G., Rao, S. R., et al., Electronic health records in ambulatory care–a national survey of physicians. N. Engl. J. Med. 359(1):50–60, 2008.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Kho, A., Henderson, L. E., Dressler, D. D., and Kripalani, S., Use of handheld computers in medical education. A systematic review. J. Gen. Intern. Med. 21(5):531–537, 2006.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Franko, O. I., and Tirrell, T. F.. Smartphone App use among medical providers in ACGME training programs. J. Med. Syst. 2011.Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Hormby, T., The story behind Apple’s Newton. 2006; http://lowendmac.com/orchard/06/john-sculley-newton-origin.html. Accessed May 7, 2012.
  11. 11.
    Apple. Apple Launches iPad. 2010; http://www.apple.com/pr/library/2010/01/27Apple-Launches-iPad.html. Accessed July 9, 2012.
  12. 12.
    Bright P. Ballmer (and Microsoft) still doesn’t get the iPad. 2010; http://arstechnica.com/information-technology/2010/07/ballmer-and-microsoft-still-doesnt-get-the-ipad/. Accessed May 7, 2012.
  13. 13.
    IDC. Media tablet and ereader markets beat second quarter targets, forecast increased for 2011, according to IDC [Press Release]. 2011; http://www.idc.com/getdoc.jsp?containerId=prUS23034011. Accessed July 9, 2012.
  14. 14.
    Research G. Gartner says worldwide media tablets sales to reach 119 million units in 2012. 2012; http://www.gartner.com/it/page.jsp?id=1980115. Accessed July 9, 2012.
  15. 15.
    Katz, M. H., Mobile tablets: Benefits to residents and patients. Arch. Intern. Med. 172(5):438, 2012.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Technology, B. L., Will iPads lead to a technology arms race? Hosp. Health Netw. 84(3):20, 2010.Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Cooper, L., Tablets in clinical settings: are they up to the job? Compliance and durability concerns may be holding consumer-grade tablet computers back. Interview by Gabriel Perna. Healthc. Inform. 29(4):39–40, 2012.Google Scholar
  18. 18.
    Patel, B. K., Chapman, C. G., Luo, N., Woodruff, J. N., and Arora, V. M., Impact of mobile tablet computers on internal medicine resident efficiency. Arch. Intern. Med. 172(5):436–438, 2012.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Hegarty, C., Barringer, K., Nelson, J., Binstadt, E., and Raghunandan, S., 2012 Innovations in Emergency Medicine Education (IEMEs). Acad. Emerg. Med. 19:S394–S411, 2012.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    Vawdrey, D. K., Wilcox, L. G., Collins, S. A., et al., A tablet computer application for patients to participate in their hospital care. AMIA Annu. Symp. Proc. 2011:1428–1435, 2011.Google Scholar
  21. 21.
    Escobar, S. K., Escobar, E. D., Whitten, C., and Griffen, J. D., Texas iPad anesthesia education domain. American Society of Anesthesiologists Annual Meeting, Chicago, 2011.Google Scholar
  22. 22.
    Strayer, S. M., Semler, M. W., Kington, M. L., and Tanabe, K. O., Patient attitudes toward physician use of tablet computers in the exam room. Fam. Med. 42(9):643–647, 2010.Google Scholar
  23. 23.
    Mc Laughlin, P., Neill, S. O., Fanning, N., et al., Emergency CT brain: Preliminary interpretation with a tablet device: Image quality and diagnostic performance of the Apple iPad. Emerg. Radiol. 19(2):127–133, 2012.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. 24.
    Soehngen, E., Rahmah, N. N., Kakizawa, Y., et al., Operation-microscope-mounted touch display tablet computer for intraoperative imaging visualization. World Neurosurg. 77(2):381–383, 2012.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. 25.
    Agresti, A., and Coull, B. A., Approximate is better than “exact” for interval estimation of binomial proportions. Am. Stat. 52(2):119–126, 1998.MathSciNetGoogle Scholar
  26. 26.
    Morris, M. G., and Venkatesh, V., Age differences in technology adoption decisions: Implications for a changing work force. Pers. Psychol. 53(2):375–403, 2000.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Joseph Sclafani
    • 1
  • Timothy F. Tirrell
    • 1
    • 2
  • Orrin I. Franko
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Orthopaedic SurgerySan DiegoUSA
  2. 2.Biomedical Science Graduate ProgramUniversity of CaliforniaSan DiegoUSA

Personalised recommendations