Healthcare News & Insights

Survey: 91% of doctors want mobile EHRs

Many organizations, including healthcare providers, have been wary about allowing the use of mobile devices because of fears that they’ll lead to sensitive data being lost or stolen. But if doctors have their say, they’ll soon be using smartphones and tablets to view electronic health records, according to a recent survey. 

Smartphones, tablets and other mobile devices are already commonly used in healthcare organizations. The majority (72%) of healthcare professionals currently use a mobile device for work, according to a recent survey from healthcare IT provider Vitera Healthcare Solutions.

However, only 6% of respondents said they’re using a smartphone or tablet to access an EHR system. That’s despite a strong demand for that capability, as nearly all (91%) of the physicians surveyed said they want mobile EHR access.

In addition, 66% of practice administrators and 43% of billing managers would like an EHR system that can be accessed with a mobile device.

That feature can benefit healthcare organizations, as it would allow doctors to view a patient’s records anytime and anywhere in order to make critical decisions as quickly as possible. Tablets can also be useful in a physician’s office, as they make a handy substitute for a clipboard and help doctors avoid the potential awkwardness of sitting in front of a computer during a patient visit.

When it comes to mobile EHR solutions, what features do healthcare professionals want the most? According to the survey respondents, the most critical features in a mobile EHR system are the abilities to use mobile devices for:

  • Reviewing patients’ charts (93%)
  • Updating patients’ charts (87%)
  • Ordering prescriptions (86%)
  • Documenting patient encounters (82%), and
  • Recording work the doctor does outside of the office (67%).

Of course, smartphones and tablets are more easily lost or stolen than desktop computers, so organizations must make sure those devices are secured before they’re allowed to access EHRs or other sensitive data. That includes requiring password protection, encryption any data that’s on the device, and allowing the device to be remotely wiped if necessary.

Providers must also consider the new legal risks created by mobile devices in health care.

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