Diabetic patients: Technology's useful to communicate with docs, as long as it's free

SAN FRANCISCO Patients with diabetes may seek information from their physicians outside of scheduled office visits but are not willing to pay for such services, according to a new study presented at the American Osteopathic Association's 115th Osteopathic Medical Conference and Exposition.

Among 300 patients with diabetes, the study authors noted, 42% communicated with their physicians by telephone outside of scheduled office visits and 13% used e-mail. However, 62% of patients said they would not pay to communicate with their physicians outside of scheduled office visits.

"Patients want some way to communicate with their physicians, such as by phone or pager, to ask questions about managing their diabetes or to share information about their condition, such as their blood sugar levels," said study co-author Jay Shubrook, an AOA board-certified osteopathic family physician from Athens, Ohio. "They like the access, but they don't want to pay for it."

The study also found older respondents, who averaged between ages 51 years and 60 years, did not use Twitter or Facebook to communicate with their physician. What's more, only 69% of respondents had Internet access at home. This could be because older adults do not find paying for the Internet a priority compared with their other expenses, including those related to other medical conditions, Shubrook said.

Recommended stories

Login or Register to post a comment.