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Mobile Medical Apps and the Orthopaedic Surgeon

Results from a new JBJS study, Mobile Technology/Social Media Usage Among Orthopaedic Surgeons, show orthopaedic surgeons are frequent users of mobile medical apps, with seven in ten orthopaedic surgeons having downloaded at least one app on their smartphone. Roughly 40% of 320 respondents to a JBJS email survey say they are using medical apps more than they did a year ago, and 41% of the respondents say they have downloaded an app offered by a supplier.  The types of information surgeons most desire in an app include drug information, surgical techniques, journal articles, and patient information. The favorite medical app mentioned was Epocrates, an athenahealth app that provides point-of-care medical information to doctors. Other favorite apps include AO Surgery Reference an d Medscape.

The findings also show that orthopaedic surgeons are getting more comfortable using mobile devices for orthopaedic tasks such as referencing drug data, checking formulary schedules, reading journals, communicating with their patients, and seeking information about orthopaedic devices/products. (see charts).  Finally, the findings reveal that although many surgeons are not using LinkedIn and Facebook, one in five believe that social media will have a positive impact on orthopaedic care in the future.

New JBJS survey shows that orthopaedic surgeons use medical apps frequently and that they’re getting more comfortable using mobile devices for communicating with patients.

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