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Bridging the electronic divide: patient and provider perspectives on e-mail communication in primary care.
Am J Manag Care. 2002 May; 8(5):427-33.AJ

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To determine e-mail utilization patterns and attitudes toward e-mail use among primary care physicians and their ambulatory outpatient clinic patients.

STUDY DESIGN

Cross-sectional baseline survey.

PARTICIPANTS AND METHODS

Participants included 476 consecutive outpatient clinic patients, 126 general medical and family practice physicians, and 16 clinical and office staff from 2 large primary care centers within an academic teaching system. They completed a survey about e-mail usage patterns and their attitudes toward using e-mail for patient-provider communication.

RESULTS

More than half of patients (52.1%) were self-defined e-mail users, yet only 10.5% of those users had ever used e-mail to communicate with their doctors. Seventy percent of all patients said they would be willing to use e-mail to communicate with their doctors. Overall, patients were concerned about logistics, such as whether the message would get to the right person and how long it would take to get a response. Physicians and staff were more optimistic than patients about the potential for e-mail to improve the doctor-patient relationship. Patient e-mail users, patient e-mail nonusers, physicians, and staff reported low levels of concern about the security and privacy of e-mail.

CONCLUSIONS

Patient-provider e-mail may diffuse slowly into the primary care clinical practice setting because of patient concerns about efficiency and effectiveness and whether e-mail use will improve their relationship with providers. Managed care organizations that plan to build e-mail and Web-based patient portals will need to promote these technologies in a way that educates both patient and providers about their appropriate use.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Consortium for Health Outcomes, Innovation, and Cost-Effectiveness Studies, University of Michigan School of Medicine, Ann Arbor 48109-0409, USA.No affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info available

Pub Type(s)

Comparative Study
Journal Article
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

Language

eng

PubMed ID

12019595

Citation

Moyer, Cheryl A., et al. "Bridging the Electronic Divide: Patient and Provider Perspectives On E-mail Communication in Primary Care." The American Journal of Managed Care, vol. 8, no. 5, 2002, pp. 427-33.
Moyer CA, Stern DT, Dobias KS, et al. Bridging the electronic divide: patient and provider perspectives on e-mail communication in primary care. Am J Manag Care. 2002;8(5):427-33.
Moyer, C. A., Stern, D. T., Dobias, K. S., Cox, D. T., & Katz, S. J. (2002). Bridging the electronic divide: patient and provider perspectives on e-mail communication in primary care. The American Journal of Managed Care, 8(5), 427-33.
Moyer CA, et al. Bridging the Electronic Divide: Patient and Provider Perspectives On E-mail Communication in Primary Care. Am J Manag Care. 2002;8(5):427-33. PubMed PMID: 12019595.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Bridging the electronic divide: patient and provider perspectives on e-mail communication in primary care. AU - Moyer,Cheryl A, AU - Stern,David T, AU - Dobias,Karen S, AU - Cox,Douglas T, AU - Katz,Steven J, PY - 2002/5/22/pubmed PY - 2002/6/11/medline PY - 2002/5/22/entrez SP - 427 EP - 33 JF - The American journal of managed care JO - Am J Manag Care VL - 8 IS - 5 N2 - OBJECTIVE: To determine e-mail utilization patterns and attitudes toward e-mail use among primary care physicians and their ambulatory outpatient clinic patients. STUDY DESIGN: Cross-sectional baseline survey. PARTICIPANTS AND METHODS: Participants included 476 consecutive outpatient clinic patients, 126 general medical and family practice physicians, and 16 clinical and office staff from 2 large primary care centers within an academic teaching system. They completed a survey about e-mail usage patterns and their attitudes toward using e-mail for patient-provider communication. RESULTS: More than half of patients (52.1%) were self-defined e-mail users, yet only 10.5% of those users had ever used e-mail to communicate with their doctors. Seventy percent of all patients said they would be willing to use e-mail to communicate with their doctors. Overall, patients were concerned about logistics, such as whether the message would get to the right person and how long it would take to get a response. Physicians and staff were more optimistic than patients about the potential for e-mail to improve the doctor-patient relationship. Patient e-mail users, patient e-mail nonusers, physicians, and staff reported low levels of concern about the security and privacy of e-mail. CONCLUSIONS: Patient-provider e-mail may diffuse slowly into the primary care clinical practice setting because of patient concerns about efficiency and effectiveness and whether e-mail use will improve their relationship with providers. Managed care organizations that plan to build e-mail and Web-based patient portals will need to promote these technologies in a way that educates both patient and providers about their appropriate use. SN - 1088-0224 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/12019595/Bridging_the_electronic_divide:_patient_and_provider_perspectives_on_e_mail_communication_in_primary_care_ L2 - https://www.ajmc.com/pubMed.php?pii=282 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -