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Patricia martinez, Lan Lu, Lisa Hark, Chelsea Aleo, Julia Haller, Ann P. Murchison, George L. Spaeth, Benjamin Leiby, Yang Dai; An Assessment Of Ophthalmic Patients’ Utilization Of Technological Devices And Social Media Platforms. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2012;53(14):1441.
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The purpose of this study is to assess ophthalmic patients’ utilization of technological devices and social media platforms to improve quality of care.
Beginning July 2011, 400 adult patients at the Wills Eye Institute were surveyed to assess their use of technological devices and social media to determine how are they use technology to obtain ophthalmic information and their preferred methods to receive appointment and medication reminders and prescription refills. Demographic data, such as age, gender and race/ethnicity were also assessed. Double data entry process, where two separate research assistants enter the data and results are merged to eliminate data entry errors, was used for data analysis.
Of the 400 ophthalmic patients who completed this survey, 36% were men, 64% were women. Of those who reported their age, 12.3% were 18-45 years, 32.3% were 45-65 years, 17.5% were 66-75 years, and 14.9% were >75 years. Of those who reported their race/ethnicity, 1.9% were Hispanic, 27.9% were African American, 3.0% were Asian, 43.1% were Caucasian, and 24.1% were "other" race/ethnicity. Of those surveyed, 77.6% have a home phone, 82.8% own a cell phone, 69.0% own a computer, 15.3% own a Tablet. For those who own a cell phone, 39.9% have access to the Internet. Overall, patients were very comfortable using the home phone, cell phone, emailing, and text messaging on a 1-5 Likert scale, averaging 4.7, 4.4, 3.8, 4.2 score respectively. Overall, patients used the majority of these technologies at least several times a week. When asked about how they would like to receive their vision health information, including medication reminders, 55% opted for phone calls, 14.5% opted for text messaging, 43.1% opted for emails and 3.7% opted for using social media.
The data collected in our survey of Wills Eye patients can be used to analyze which technologies are most frequently used by our patients, how they are used, and patients’ interest levels in receiving health care information via technology. The preferred methods of receiving vision care information were phone calls and emails. This data could inform decisions about how to communicate effectively with patients, which can potentially lead to changes in doctor-patient interactions at a systems-level.
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