Physicians use multiple sources of information to search for answers to clinical questions. These sources include textbooks, journals, colleagues, and electronic resources, including the Internet. Methods: To explore what sources are most commonly used by staff military physicians, we distributed a survey asking them to describe sources of medical information they used most frequently while in garrison and while on deployment. Results: Most military physicians use the Internet to access medical information every day while in garrison. The frequency and pattern of use of medical resources differs while on deployment. The most common sources of electronic medical information are general Internet search engines (Google). Open-domain sites (PubMed and MEDLINE) are more commonly used by military surgeons, while filtered secondary information sources (Upto Date, MD Consult) appear to be more commonly used by military primary care physicians. Younger physicians use electronic resources more commonly than do older physicians. Conclusions: Knowing what sources of medical information military physicians use to search for answers to their clinical questions can help guide allocation of medical informatics resources, particularly to deployed military physicians providing in-theater care.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health