Digital Professionalism in Patient Care: A Case-Based Survey of Surgery Faculty and Trainees

Robert Naples, Ainhoa Costas-Chavarri, Daniel W Golden, Elizabeth Gmitter, Judith C French, Jeremy M Lipman
Submitted: September, 2020

This study presents opinions of faculty, residents, and medical students to inform policy on the appropriate use of digital devices in the patient care setting. A survey was administered from September 2018 to October 2018 to faculty and residents within the general surgery department at a large academic medical center and all fourth-year medical students at an affiliated university. The survey included direct statements and case-based scenarios on similar themes to triangulate responses. Digital devices are used by faculty and trainees at similar rates for parallel purposes, and the benefits for patient-related care are evident. However, the use of digital devices in the presence of patients should be minimized and always preceded by an explanation. These findings can inform institutional policy when creating guidelines on the professional use of these devices in the patient care setting.

  • Professionalism