A survey reveals that 85 percent of dermatologists use a smartphone, 90 percent of whom use Apple iPhones. Almost all (90 percent) of those iPhone users employ their devices for work-related purposes, according to an article in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology.
The survey results parallel national use trends among physicians, concluded the authors. For instance, an October 2012 report from research firm KLAS found that the vast majority of healthcare providers surveyed (94 percent) use Apple more than any other device manufacturer.
The survey of 115 dermatologists and dermatology residents was conducted at meetings of the Dallas and Texas Dermatological Societies regarding their awareness and referral behavior, their use of smartphones such as iPhones, and their likelihood of using an iPhone app for referral to the Coalition of Skin Diseases, which is composed of 15 nonprofit patient advocacy organizations offering resources and support to patients with skin disease.
More than 30 percent of survey respondents indicated that they had never referred a patient to a patient advocacy organization, and 28 percent were not able to identify a single skin disease for which a patient advocacy organization existed. Of those who had referred patients, 65 percent referred a maximum of three times per year.
According to the article, the most common reasons cited for not referring patients were lack of awareness of organizations, their resources for patients, and the time-consuming nature of making referrals. In response to whether respondents would use an iPhone application that streamlined referral to patient advocacy organizations, 85 percent reported that they would, and 85 percent reported that the iPhone app would likely increase their referrals.
In response to their findings, the article's authors developed the Skin Advocate iPhone App and released it as a free download on the Apple App store. The app helps connect patients who have skin conditions or hair loss with patient advocacy groups who can provide resources and support for them.
To learn more:
- read the article