News | Mobile Devices | May 03, 2017

Spok Survey Confirms Mobile Device Infrastructure Improvements and Diversity in Hospitals

Second part of annual two-part survey finds data security has improved, with the majority of respondents using smartphones

Spok Survey Confirms Mobile Device Infrastructure Improvements and Diversity in Hospitals

May 3, 2017 — Spok Inc. recently released the second part of the company's annual mobility in healthcare survey. Spok has been conducting this survey since 2011 to assess mobile workflow enablement trends in hospitals across the country. More than 300 U.S. healthcare professionals responded to this year’s questions about mobile strategy development, bring your own device (BYOD) policies, communications infrastructure and opportunities to improve mobile communications.

“The first installment of our 2017 research, released last month, examined how hospitals are developing, maintaining and executing on their mobile strategies,” said Hemant Goel, president of Spok. “This second piece in our two-part series looks at the details behind these strategies. For example, we asked about the types of mobile devices particular staff carry, what challenges hospitals are encountering with mobile device usage, and whether they support BYOD programs.”

The research this year reveals that hospitals are making progress in addressing the previously identified infrastructure gaps in order to better support mobile strategies and devices. “Forty-five percent of respondents answered that Wi-Fi coverage is a challenge for mobile device users, and 38 percent cited cellular coverage as problematic. Both of these data points showed a 9 percentage point improvement over 2016,” said Goel.

In addition, data security as a mobile device challenge dropped from 43 percent to 31 percent. “Though there is still a lot of room for improvement, the responses this year demonstrate that hospitals are taking action and making progress addressing these important issues,” Goel stated.

Survey findings also revealed that hospital staff still carry a diverse mix of mobile devices to do their jobs. For the sixth straight year smartphones are the most popular device, with 77 percent of respondents saying their organization supports them, while other tools, including pagers, maintain strong representation.

The report also assessed the backup communication plans hospitals have in place should cellular networks become overloaded or fail, and the perceived reliability of different communication channels. Survey participants were also asked to identify the biggest opportunity for mobile communication improvements over the next three to five years. Answers included enhancing patient care team collaboration, and using mobile strategies to simplify technology and bring uniformity across hospital systems.

Part one of the survey looked at how hospitals include strategic business and clinical goals in the planning process.

For more information: www.spok.com

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