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Study: Patients Consider Digital Tools When Choosing Docs

January 20, 2015
by Rajiv Leventhal
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Most patients say that digital services play an important role when they are choosing a physician, according to new research from the Brentwood, Tenn.-based research group Technology Advice.

To determine which digital services patients value (and what their physicians are providing), TechnologyAdvice Research conducted a nationwide survey of 406 U.S. patients who had recently had an appointment with their primary care physician (or had an appointment scheduled).

The data revealed that less than a third of patients said their physicians offered digital services, while 61 percent said digital health tools play a central role when they’re choosing a doctor. What’s more, 41 percent of patients aged 25-34 said they would like their physician to offer online scheduling, and 33 percent of patients all ages said they would like to view their test results and diagnostics online.

The top three requested services were online test results, online appointment scheduling (29.3 percent) and online bill pay (25.1 percent). Of those, only online test results was widely offered—27.8 percent of patients said their doctors offered it, while only 17.7 percent of patients reported that their physician offered online bill pay and 19.7 percent reported being able to schedule appointments online, according to MobiHealthNews.

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