47% of hospitals say Wi-Fi is top challenge for mobile device infrastructure, survey finds

While challenges associated with using mobile devices in healthcare settings appear to be declining, hospitals and health system professionals still report issues implementing mobile infrastructure, according to a recent Spok survey.

For its Mobile Communications in Healthcare report, Spok, a healthcare communication software provider, surveyed 460 healthcare professionals from U.S. hospitals and health systems. Participants covered various roles: 38 percent were clinicians, 21 percent were IT and telecommunications staff, 10 percent were executive leaders, 7 percent were clinical application staff and 24 percent were business analysts, pharmacists and patient services staff.

Four survey insights:

1. Almost half (47 percent) of respondents said Wi-Fi coverage is a top challenge for mobile device infrastructure at their organization, down from 55 percent in 2016.

2. Thirty-nine percent of participants said cellular coverage is still a challenge, down from 46 percent in 2016.

3. Smartphones are the most commonly used communication tools, with 75 percent of respondents using them in their respective hospitals.

4. For essential functions of communication devices, 80 percent of participants said communicating with care team members, 67 percent said delivering real-time clinical information, 67 percent said receiving actionable information, 60 percent said sending and receiving protected health information and 50 percent said sharing EHR data.

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