How physicians feel about the connected health environment: 5 findings

The top challenge to achieving a fully connected healthcare environment, say physicians, is cost, according to a MedData Point report.

MedData Point, a market research program powered by MedData Group, surveyed 171 physicians across specialties, age and practice size to gauge their view on the future of connected health.

Here are five key findings on the physician perspective of connected health.

1. Cost (67 percent) is the main challenge to achieving a fully connected healthcare environment, followed by providers' resistance to change their practice styles (54 percent), technological limitations (53 percent), privacy concerns (50 percent) and patients' resistance to technologies (22 percent).

2. Certain specialties were more likely to believe cost is the biggest challenge: Dermatology (100 percent), surgery (89 percent), psychiatry (86 percent), pediatrics (82 percent) and family medicine (75 percent).

3. Age, too, appears to play a role in shaping opinion of when connected healthcare is possible. The majority (67 percent) of physicians 40-years-old and younger believe healthcare can achieve a fully connected technology environment within the next five years, while 61 percent of physicians over age 40 believe a fully connected environment is more than five years away.

4. Participants indicated patient portals are likely to be the first to be widely adopted, followed by web-based physician consultation services, lifestyle and fitness coaching for wellness or health risk reduction, telehealth applications, home care visits, monitoring technologies for geriatric patients and in interoperable EHRs.

5. Interestingly, larger practice sizes (more than 16 providers) were more likely to believe patient portals would be adopted the soonest than smaller practices (between one and 15 providers), at 51 percent and 27 percent, respectively.

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