Trends in Mobile Medicine: Smartphone Apps for Physicians

“Healing is a matter of time,” Hippocrates once said, “but it is sometimes also a matter of opportunity.”

As smartphone technology rapidly evolves and puts knowledge literally into the hands of physicians, Hippocrates ‘opportunity’ could never be closer.

And taking advantage of those opportunities are the early adopters of smartphone apps and related technologies that instantly put databases, web-based medical literature and studies into the hands of physicians. While there are laggards—predominantly hospitals struggling to reconcile Web 2.0 technology with privacy concerns—the vast majority of physicians, as well as medical school and health facilities are welcoming the latest advances with open arms and minds.

Already, 72 percent of American doctors have a smartphone, with that number expected to rise by another eight percent within two years. Of those who do have the technology, 95 percent are already downloading medical information apps, such as Epocrates, Medscape and Skyscape. And their numbers are growing. Some experts predict that the wireless health market is expected to hit $9.6 billion by 2012, up from $2.7 billion in 2007.

In short, smartphones and their apps are causing a seismic shift in the way doctors do business. Up to 30 percent of accredited medical schools in the US actually require students to have smartphones, while the rest actively encourage it. At point-of-care, more than half of physicians say they actively seek out advice and information several times a day, even while smartphone apps remain a grey area that may attract regulation as diagnostic tools come to light. Across the board, healthcare professions are increasingly relying on smartphones to e-prescribe, stay on top of alerts, recalls and approvals, and implement better treatment access in underserved areas.

The question is which are the best apps, who’s using them—and how?

Key insights from expert sources:

In Trends in Mobile Medicine: Smartphone Apps for Physicians FirstWord delivers the answers in a fascinating report that ranges across the smartphone landscape to examine how the trend in medical apps is affecting the industry. The report, which includes apps-related technologies, dissects how they are transforming healthcare provider decisions, increasing access to treatment, compiling critical vaccination program data, monitoring pharmacy stock-outs and increasing patient compliance. Based on nine in-depth physician and industry expert interviews, the report offers a critical review of the top ten smartphone apps, the adoption trends in three hospitals and one medical school, as well as how mobile apps are penetrating emerging markets.

The report reviews the trends in smartphone medical apps to establish:

  • How the rapid adoption of apps is changing how doctors and patients interact
  • Which smartphone apps are favoured as well as their benefits and failures

The report

  • Examines the current and emerging smartphone apps and related ‘smart’ technology adoption trends in point-of-care, hospitals and medical schools
  • Overviews the current and project market penetration looking ahead to 2012
  • Offers nine in-depth interviews from physician and industry experts spanning three continents
  • Reviews the top ten apps and offers feedback on their best and worst features
  • Includes a comprehensive review of four related ‘smart’ technologies

Trends in Mobile Medicine: Smartphone Apps for Physicians costs $395 a copy. Click here to order

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Publication date:
 May, 2010
Product code:
$395 User Single License
$1,975 Site License
$5,925 Global License

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Key quotes from opinion leaders

The take home message is that we need to think of the smartphone as a medical device. The capability is there and it’s how we choose to use it.” Ivor Kovic, MD, Head of the Pazin Ambulence Service in Croatia an international presenter on smartphone healthcare technologies.

There are many apps that provide certain types of functionality, but there is still room for more innovative medical and healthcare apps.” Ilitifat Husain, founder and editor of

The possibility exists that you could have three different images from three different vendors and through the web enabled delivery they can be combined into a 3D image on ResMD. The physician will not need to change applications.” Biophysicist Ross Mitchell, PhD, University of Calgary Imaging Informatics/Calgary Scientific Inc on harmonizing images via Pure Web platform.

Content Highlights

  • Executive Summary
  • Hospital and Medical School App Trends
    > Doylestown Hospital
    > Mount Sinai Medical Center
    > Mercy Medical Center
    > Expert Insight: Georgetown University Medical School and Beyond
    > Expert Insight: Emergency Medicine App Usage
  • Medical App Profiles
    > Epocrates Inc
    > Skyscape Inc
    > Medscape Mobile
    > PatientKeeper Mobile Clinical Results
    > MedCalc
    > Quest Care360 Mobile
    > Blausen Human Atlas
    > OsiriX
    > Calgary Scientific’s ResolutionMD
    > VaxTrak
    > Expert Insight: Medical Grade Apps Need
  • Mobile Apps in the Developing World
    > Sana
    > Cell-Life: Cellphones 4 HIV
    > SMS for Life
  • Related Technologies
    > iPad
    > Vitality Glowcap
    > Proteus Biomedical
    > CellScope
  • Acknowledgements
  • Index