Article Date: 12/1/2000

Two recent surveys of physician Internet use reveal somewhat different pictures. Although the survey focused on primary care physicians, the results may give some insight into how frequently other healthcare providers also use this valuable tool.

P/S/L Research has found that between 55% (Germany) and 93% (United States) of primary care physicians have accessed the Internet and project that in 2001, between 75% (Germany and Italy) and 97% (United States) will. They find that physician use varies from searching primarily for disease and drug information to communicating with other healthcare professionals and accessing specific Web sites. Many physicians in the study also suggested that their patients use the Internet to obtain medical information.

However,, a new service from Ziment, found that although 75% of physicians used the Internet for drug and disease information, only 27% believed the Internet would save health system money. Only one-third were interested in using the Internet for communicating with patients, consulting with colleagues, participating in clinical trials or filing insurance claims.

Some physicians in the Ziment study did express interest in using the Internet to practice medicine remotely (41%) and to access medical records online (21%).

Optometric Management, Issue: December 2000