Mobile Access to Clinical Information at the Point of Care


  • Fatima M Mncube-Barnes UIC Alumni
  • Ben Lee Meharry Medical College, Nashville, TN.
  • Olumuyiwa Esuruoso School of Medicine, Meharry Medical College, Nashville, TN.
  • Phil N Gona University of Massachusetts, Boston.
  • Stephane Daphnis Meharry Medical College



Purpose: Librarians partnered with the Chief Resident and coordinators of the Internal Medicine residency program to assess how a formalized approach of introducing mobile access to clinical knowledge at the point of care enhanced medical practice. This three-year long study demonstrated that over time residents were able to adapt handheld computing with support on how the technology could facilitate successful completion of their work role-related tasks.

Three cohorts of internal medicine residents were issued iPads at the beginning of their second year and trained in accessing institutional resources from the digital library. Pre- and post-intervention surveys were respectively administered at the beginning of the second year and end of the third year of training. Institutional technical and resource support were made available for each cohort. Pre- and post-intervention responses were compared using two sample methods and summarized through descriptive statistics.

68 residents (38% women, mean age = 35.1, SD = 5.1 years) completed the pre-intervention survey questionnaires and 45 completed the post-intervention surveys. There were significant improvements in the residents’ level of computer experience, familiarity with medical information Apps, and appreciation for the electronic medical record. Additionally, residents preferred a highly capable computer system for clinical purposes and positively perceived the potential effects of computers and electronic medical record on medicine.

 Conclusion: Study findings suggested that institutions played a critical role in providing technology training to their resident physicians, especially in mobile access to clinical information at the point of care. The residents showed appreciation of iPads and library support that facilitated successful completion of their work role-related tasks. Replicating this study with a larger sample size derived from multiple sites is suggested for future studies that should also include mid-level healthcare professionals such as Physician Assistants and Advanced Nurse Practitioners.

Author Biographies

Fatima M Mncube-Barnes, UIC Alumni

Dr. Fatima Barnes is the Executive Director of Louis Stokes Health Sciences Library at Howard University in Washington DC. Dr. Barnes was instrumental in assisting faculty integrate iPads in medical education while managing the Meharry Medical College Library before moving to Howard University.

Ben Lee, Meharry Medical College, Nashville, TN.

Student Doctor Ben Lee is a 3rd year medical student. He is also a Scholar at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) Center for Health Policy at Meharry Medical College.

Olumuyiwa Esuruoso, School of Medicine, Meharry Medical College, Nashville, TN.

Dr. Esuruoso is a clinician, an Assistant Professor, and Associate Residency Director in Internal Medicine, at Meharry Medical College.

Phil N Gona, University of Massachusetts, Boston.

Dr. Gona is currently an associate professor of biostatistics in the College of Nursing and Health Sciences at the University of Massachusetts Boston.

Stephane Daphnis, Meharry Medical College

Stephane has an MBA from Tennessee State University and works at the Meharry Medical College Library as a Technology Coordinator. He trains faculty to use REDCap and was instrumental in training residents to use iPads in accessing information at the point-of-care.




How to Cite

Mncube-Barnes, F. M., Lee, B., Esuruoso, O., Gona, P. N., & Daphnis, S. (2016). Mobile Access to Clinical Information at the Point of Care. Online Journal of Public Health Informatics, 8(3).



Original Articles