Spyglass Consulting issues study about physician smartphone adoption experiencing exponential growth

Menlo Park 23 July 2010Spyglass Consulting Group has released its most recent health care study, "Point of Care Communications for Physicians". It shows significant trends on how physicians across the United States are adopting mobile communications at point of care to improve communications and collaboration, streamline productivity, and enhance patient care and safety.


The report reveals 94 percent of physicians are using smartphones to communicate, manage personal and business work flows, and access medical information. This represents a 60 percent increase from Spyglass' findings in a similar study published in November 2006 where 59 percent of physicians were using Smartphones. "Physician smartphone adoption is occurring more rapidly than with members of the general public", stated Gregg Malkary, Managing Director of Spyglass Consulting Group. "Physicians are showing a clear preference for using the Apple iPhone (44 percent) over the RIM Blackberry (25 percent)."

Seventy-eight percent of physicians interviewed were experiencing difficulties accessing and communicating with colleagues in a timely manner. Physicians are busy mobile professionals who are constantly on the go and are not always available when they are needed. Many lack financial incentives to be more accessible because the current fee-for-service reimbursement system encourages physicians to focus on the quantity vs. the quality of health care delivered. Non-essential phone or e-mail communications with colleagues and patients are seen as non-reimbursable distractions.

Physicians interviewed report they are overwhelmed by the daily volume of communications received from colleagues, care team members, and patients. They lack automated tools to manage voice mail, pager messages, SMS messages, and electronic mail. They are forced to continually check separate data silos and manually filter and prioritize communications based upon sender, subject and priority. Critical communications easily fall through the cracks.

Fifty-six percent of physicians interviewed were concerned about lack of standardized processes for transitioning care between colleagues. Patient hand off process used by hospital-based physicians and the patient referral process used by community-based physicians are informal and ad hoc which can introduce medical errors into the patient care process.

"Point of Care Communications for Physicians" presents the findings of an end-user market study focused on how physicians across the United States are rapidly adopting mobile communications at point of care to improve communications and collaboration, streamline productivity, and enhance patient care and safety.

"Point of Care Communications for Physicians" is an outgrowth of a similar study published by Spyglass in November 2006 entitled "Trends in Mobile Communications". Content for "Point of Care Communications for Physicians" was derived from more than 100 in-depth interviews with physicians working in acute care and ambulatory environments nationwide. Physicians interviewed were technically competent and representative of a broad range of medical specialties, organisation types, and organisation sizes.

The telephone interviews were conducted over a three-month period starting in March 2010. The purpose of the interviews was to identify the needs and requirements for communications at point of care through discussions about:

  • existing work flow inefficiencies in communicating with colleagues and patients,
  • current usage models for mobile communications devices and solutions, and
  • barriers for widespread mobile communications adoption.

Spyglass evaluated key vendor product offerings and identified early adopter organisations that have successfully deployed point of care solutions. The "Point of Care Communications for Physicians" report is targeted at:

  • software and hardware vendors, systems integrators and management consulting groups who are selling hardware, applications and services into the health care industry,
  • health care administrators and IT executives who are making strategic decisions to fund clinical information technology solutions,
  • clinicians who are involved in informatics and clinical system evaluation and selection, and
  • investment banking and private equity investors.

Spyglass Consulting Group is a market intelligence firm and consultancy focused on the nexus of information technology and health care. Spyglass offers products and services in customer and market intelligence, strategic partnership development, product marketing and investment due diligence. Spyglass' current research is entitled "Healthcare without Bounds" that focuses on the current and future potential of mobile computing and wireless technologies within the health care industry.

Spyglass customers include more than 140 leading high technology vendors, management consulting organisations and health care providers including Cisco, IBM, Microsoft, Intel, Hewlett Packard, Oracle, Johnson & Johnson, Pfizer, Siemens, GE Healthcare, Philips Medical, Sprint, and Kaiser Permanente.

Gregg Malkary is the founder and Managing Director of Spyglass Consulting Group. He has more than 20 years experience in the high technology industry working with Fortune 2000 companies to help them use information technology for competitive advantage. Gregg Malkary has domain expertise in mobile computing, wireless and broadband technologies with direct experience in the health care, hospitality, manufacturing, communications and entertainment markets.

Prior to founding Spyglass Consulting Group in August 2002, Gregg Malkary was an Associate Partner at Outlook Ventures, a venture capital firm focused on early stage investments in enterprise software and communications companies. Previously, Gregg Malkary was the Director of Strategic Planning for Exodus Communications where he was responsible for identifying, evaluating and executing growth initiatives for Exodus in the managed web-hosting marketplace. Gregg Malkary has also held consulting and senior management roles in business development, strategic planning and product marketing for public and private technology companies including IBM, Hewlett Packard, Accenture, Silicon Graphics and Skytel Communications.

Gregg Malkary frequently speaks at regional and national conferences focused on mobile computing, wireless technologies and health care related issues. Gregg Malkary is an honours graduate of Brown University having earned a MS and BA in Computer Science. He was awarded the prestigious North American Philips Corporation Fellowship for his graduate research work in graphical simulation environments.

The complete market study, "Healthcare Without Bounds: Point of Care Communications for Physicians", is available for $2495 (USD) from Spyglass Consulting Group. For additional information about this study, you can contact Gregg Malkary.

Source: Spyglass Consulting Group

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