Internet trends: marketing research & predictions

Docs are heavy tech users – early adopters for healthcare technology

June 21st, 2011 by

Healthcare technology is one of the most developing markets ought to change our life in the coming years. With a new focus on consumers, remote systems can manage instant alerts and direct communication with health care providers. According to PricewaterhouseCoopers’ Health Research Institute, the annual consumer market for remote/mobile monitoring devices and services to be $7.7 billion to $43 billion.

Luckily, physicians are embracing new technologies and are heavy tech users themselves: when we explore the “internet of things”, we find this specific target group to be most cooperative with technology innovations.

Here are some research indications we’ve gathered to support this claim:

1. Physicians are smartphones lovers – in 2010 72% have already used smartphones (compare that to 37% of mobile users in the US that own a smart phone today). At that time, 20% of US physicians were planning to buy an iPad, even before its launch (Epocrates survey 2010).

According to Spyglass Consulting Group, 94 percent of physicians are using everyday smartphones and consulting apps like Epocrates or Johnson and Johnson’s BlackBag while on-the-job.

2. At the point of care

  • 40%  use a digital device.
  • More than two in five physicians go online during patient consultations, with the majority of this time being spent on a handheld device.
  • Most popular content consumed:  drug reference databases, online journals, disease associations, and support groups for patients.

3. Internet behavior:

Almost all physicians  are online (99%). The average physician spends about 8 hours online each week for professional purposes (Manhattan Research 2010).

4. Social media engagement:

Manhattan Research 2010 shows that:

  • two-thirds of doctors are using social media for professional purposes
  • Nearly half of physicians say they are influenced by user-generated content.
  • Physicians prefer open forums (e.g., blog) over a physician-only online community!

According to another research conducted by Kantar Media (Februrary 2011), 37% of U.S.-based physicians are using online social networks for professional purposes, and log on to such sites an average of nearly 230 times per year. Furthermore  – 41% of physicians who access social networks for professional purposes are active on two or more networks.

4. Future innovations: using technology to monitor patients health (PricewaterhouseCoopers research, September 2010)

  • Nearly two-thirds (63%) of physicians are using personal devices for mobile health solutions that aren’t connected to their practice.
  • Of those physicians who are using mobile devices in their practice, 56 percent said the devices expedite decision making and nearly 40 percent said the use of mobile devices decreases time spent on administration.
  • 57% of physicians are ready to use remote devices to monitor the patients outside of the hospital (and they want it filtered by relevancy).

According to TrendsSpotting’s research analysis, here are the major challenges:

1. Medical data should be transformed by mobile devices (one of the major obstacles)

2. Filtered information and accuracy: Physicians should receive only relevant alerts and are not to be overloaded with data, while consumers should trust the accuracy of these systems in order to pay for their benefits.

2. Time saving and friendly applications

3. Medical data should be fully electronic (as for today – only half of physicians surveyed currently access electronic medical records while visiting and treating their patients).

4. Social alerts – immediate communication with those who are near (geo-location) should be integrated with real time medical information!

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4 Responses

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