Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Smartphone use in the world of oncology

How are oncologists using smartphones? Let's take a look at an article on CancerNetwork.com titled, "Smartphones hustle to maintain pace with rapid rate of change in oncology."

Here are some snippets from that story:
"Oncology is one of the few fields in medicine where things are changing at a very rapid pace, with protocols and drug regimens and research actually changing day to day the way you treat your patients," said Tom Giannulli, MD, chief medical information officer for Epocrates. "In that group of physicians, keeping in touch is a much higher priority than for your average family practitioner with respect to researching new developments."

More than 40% of oncologists reported avoiding at least two errors per week with Epocrates products, according to a recent survey by Epocrates. Forty-seven percent reported saving 20 minutes or more per day by reaching into their pockets rather than going to their desks to look up information.

"Mobile devices have quickly become a preferred vehicle for physicians to access clinical information due to their ease of use and inherent portability," added Dr. D'Amico, who is also director of clinical oncology at Duke Comprehensive Cancer Center in Durham, N.C.

Wafik S. El-Deiry, MD, PhD, chief of hematology/oncology at Penn State Hershey Cancer Institute in Hershey, said he uses Twitter to tell colleagues about advances in genetics and therapies related to cancer.
Given that the field of oncology is always evolving with new targeted therapies and treatment options, it's an area where smartphones will truly benefit clinicians who are caring for patients. I wonder how many smartphone-related abstracts will be presented at ASCO next year.

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