5 digital characteristics of office-based vs. hospital-based doctors

Study finds hospital-based doctors lean more toward digital technology than their office-based counterparts.

When looking at the digital habits of physicians who work for hospitals and those working in offices, there are important variances. Here are five points to know about how these groups differ:

1. Hospital-based doctors place a higher value on both drug reference and diagnostic tool mobile apps as important digital information sources.

2. About 81 percent of hospital-based doctors say they use their smartphones for professional reasons. Only 73 percent of office-based doctors responded the same.

3. Hospital-based doctors are only slightly more likely than office-based doctors to use tablets for professional reasons: 44 percent vs. 42 percent. Interestingly, 16 percent of office-based doctors use tablets for personal reasons only compared to 8 percent of hospital-based doctors, demonstrating that more of the latter use tablets overall but mostly for personal use solely.

4. More office-based doctors (29 percent) say that they use email as a way to communicate with patients compared with hospital-based doctors (23 percent).

5. Office-based doctors (45 percent) are more likely to use professional social networks for professional purposes compared to hospital-based doctors (33 percent). These could include QuantiaMD, Sermo or Epocrates.

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