KENILWORTH, N.J., Oct. 10, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- As demand on physician's time increases, so in turn does their use of mobile technology to improve efficiencies. According to a Merck Manuals survey released today, nearly three in four family physicians (73 percent) say they consider themselves tech-savvy. In fact, two in three doctors (66 percent) use a mobile device to access medical information in a professional setting more than 10 times a day.
The survey of 220 family physicians, conducted by the Merck Manuals at a recent medical conference, examined usage and perceptions of mobile technology in the family practice setting. While the vast majority of respondents (81 percent) agreed that the availability of medical information on mobile devices has changed the dynamic of office visits, responses for how the dynamic has changed varied:
- More than half (56 percent) of physicians said doctors and patients are more likely to review medical information together
- More than a quarter (29 percent) of physicians indicated that appointments are more efficient as a result of mobile medical information
- About one third (34 percent) of physicians said patients arrive more informed and prepared – yet 33 percent said patients arrive misinformed
"Mobile technology is not meant to replace the patient/doctor relationship," said Dr. Robert S. Porter, M.D., Merck Manuals Editor-in-Chief. "In fact, it can enhance the office visit by allowing them to review information together, as our survey found."
Family physicians identified a number of reasons for consulting their mobile devices in the office. Of those who use a mobile device to access medical information in a professional setting:
- 80 percent use the information to inform their diagnosis or treatment plans for patients
- 66 percent catch up on the latest news in the medical community
- 60 percent use it to explain and further illustrate information to patients
- 28 percent send information directly to patients
"Physicians are becoming increasingly reliant on mobile technology to access relevant medical information when they need it most. That's why it was so important to us to launch our longstanding medical resources as free mobile apps for consumers and professionals this year," said Dr. Porter. "Physicians can access thousands of medical topics, videos, images and other resources on the professional app and can direct their patients to the consumer app for trusted medical information."
The redesigned and re-launched Merck Manual Professional App and Merck Manual Consumer App provide users with a comprehensive library of reference articles on diseases, symptoms and treatments. The free apps also contain more than 200 animations and videos, which can be downloaded for access without an internet connection. Users can additionally access continually updated medical news, interactive quizzes and drug reference information.
About The Merck Manuals
First published in 1899 as a small reference book for physicians and pharmacists, The Merck Manual grew in size and scope to become one of the world's most widely used comprehensive medical resources for professionals and consumers. As The Manual evolved, it continually expanded the reach and depth of its offerings to reflect the mission of providing the best medical information to a wide cross-section of users, including medical professionals and students, veterinarians and veterinary students, and consumers. In 2015, The Merck Manual kicked off Global Medical Knowledge 2020, a program to make the best current medical information accessible by up to three billion professionals and patients around the world by 2020. For access to thousands of medical topics with images, videos and a constantly expanding set of resources, visit MerckManuals.com and connect with us on social media:
The survey of 220 family practice physicians was conducted in September 2016 at a medical conference. For details on survey methodology, please contact Jamie Kloss at [email protected].
For 125 years, Merck has been a global health care leader working to help the world be well. Merck is known as MSD outside the United States and Canada. Through our prescription medicines, vaccines, biologic therapies, and animal health products, we work with customers and operate in more than 140 countries to deliver innovative health solutions. We also demonstrate our commitment to increasing access to health care through far-reaching policies, programs and partnerships. For more information, visit www.merck.com and connect with us on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and LinkedIn.