Physicians Increasingly Adopting Digital Health Tools @ AMA Survey

September 2022

Executive Summary:

Joaquim Cardoso MSc.
health transformation — content platform

September 16, 2022 (patientengagementhit)

1.There has been an increase in the number of physicians that see a definite advantage in digital tools 

  • There has been growth in those that see an advantage especially among those 51+ years old. 
  • Those that see no advantage are trending downwards and are concentrated in the Specialist and age 51+ segments.

2.Adoption of digital tools has grown significantly among all physicians regardless of gender, specialty or age 

  • Use of all seven tools has increased significantly. 
  • Improved clinical outcomes and work efficiency are key drivers. 
  • Coverage by standard malpractice insurance continues to be the most common requirement and data privacy concerns have increased.

3.Adoption of remote care tools such as tele-visits and remote monitoring had the most movement 

  • Use of tele-visits/virtual visits has nearly tripled since 2019 and remote monitoring for efficiency has nearly doubled. 
  • Providing remote care to patients has increased significantly as a motivator of adoption of digital tools. 
  • Reducing stress/burnout has also gained importance as a driver of digital tool adoption

4.Growth in enthusiasm has largely been concentrated in tele-visits 

  • Enthusiasm for virtual visits has increased significantly from 2019, while enthusiasm for most other digital solutions is largely stagnant 
  • Enthusiasm for consumer access to clinical data has shifted down since last wave

5.Plans for adoption of most emerging technologies is high but current usage low 

  • Nearly 1 in 5 are currently using augmented intelligence for practice efficiencies and 2 in 5 plan to adopt in the next year. 
  • Nearly 3 in 5 physicians believe technology can most help key areas such as chronic disease patients and preventative care

Selected slides: 

About the study

Digital health encompasses a broad scope of tools that can improve health care, enable lifestyle change and create operational efficiencies. This includes digital solutions involving telemedicine and telehealth, mHealth, wearables, remote monitoring, apps and others.

In July 2016, the AMA first conducted a study of physicians’ motivations and requirements for the adoption of digital clinical tools. While there is broad-based optimism, physicians told the AMA there are “must-haves” that digital health tools need to turn their enthusiasm into adoption.

These requirements fall into the following categories:

  • Does it work?
  • Will I receive payment?
  • Will I be liable?
  • Will it work in my practice?

As these tools matured, the AMA repeated the study in 2019 (PDF) and 2022 (PDF) to determine the degree to which adoption has occurred in the past few years and any attitudinal shifts among physicians towards their use and key requirements.

This survey also looked at emerging technologies including various applications of augmented intelligence.


  • This survey was designed to replicate the 2016 and 2019 surveys exactly, to have a statistically valid and reliable comparative sample.
  • The same physician panel was used as in 2016 and 2019, provided by WebMD.
  • The 2022 survey is slightly longer than the 2019 survey at around 20 minutes, but new questions were added at the back of the survey to not interfere with the flow of the original questionnaire.
  • The basic 2016 survey was followed exactly in wording and question order, with only a few variations, to remove some small questions that were no longer relevant and add new questions regarding advanced technologies and information sources.
  • The sample used careful quotas to ensure a similar sample composition as in 2016

7 Specific Tools:

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