Smartphone Medical Apps Use by Health Professionals: Is Gender a Confounding Factor?

  •  Elena J. Tetenova    
  •  Aleksei V. Nadezhdin    
  •  Alexey J. Kolgashkin    
  •  Mikhail V. Fedorov    
  •  Inessa A. Bedina    
  •  Egor A. Koshkin    
  •  Sergei V. Zolotukhin    
  •  Alexandr I. Klyachin    
  •  Valery V. Shipitsin    
  •  Yelena I. Sokoltchik    
  •  Evgeniya A. Koshkina    
  •  Sergei G. Koporov    
  •  Evgeny A. Bryun    


The main aim of the study was to establish, whether the gender of a health professional affects the use of smartphone medical apps. We studied the basic patterns of smartphone use in doctors with the largest addiction clinic in Moscow, engaged in in-patient treatment, to access possible gender-determined “digital divide”, evaluate the current use of medical applications, and eventual intentions to use a decision-support app. We performed a cross-sectional study of a non-probability sample of medical doctors using a non-standardized anonymous self-questionnaire, covering 3 domains: socio-demographic and professional characteristics; present use of a mobile device; attitudes to the use of mobile medical apps. The study covered 212 of the 328 staff members, 56% men and 44% women. The largest age group was 41–50 years old (32.1%), followed by 51–60 (25%), 31–40 (23.6%), over 61 (10.8%) and 20-30 (8.5%). 77.8% of respondents use mobile Internet in the office to search for professionally relevant information. 86.5% would like to use mobile applications that help in their professional activities. We failed to confirm the hypothesis about possible gender-related features in the use of mobile devices in doctors. The dedicated mobile system for supporting clinical decision-making in addiction hospitals may be in-demand. The level of doctors’ use of mobile devices and mobile applications shows the absence of gender barriers to the utilization of such systems. In the future, we recommend studying other socio-demographic and occupational predictors affecting the use of professional mobile applications by health professionals of various specialties and the acceptability of the gaming approach in the field.

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