A surgeon was on C-SPAN this weekend talking about similar issues. He said that the doctors go to all these long years of schools, then are expected to have all that information in their head, instantly available. He said that's ridiculous. He also pointed out that the use of computers simply for creating the prescription (avoiding dosage errors and handwriting recognition problems) would avoid many deaths each year. So I guess I would like my doctor to have a computer handy (a handheld one if it didn't pass germs, etc. from patient to patient).
posted on 07/14/2002 11:50:50 AM PDT
I have had some semi personal experience with this. My mom had cataract surgery and almost immediately after began experiencing pain in her eye. Her current doctor did not know what was wrong and gave her medicine that did not work. She went back to him several more times and he could not tell her what was wrong. She switched doctors and the new guy began additional treatments that eventually cleared the problem up, as much as possible.
I went to a meeting with the original clinic's risk manager (fancy name for an insurance dude) and during the course of discussion, he handed me a medical story printout about what went wrong with the original procedure. One of the things that so disturbed my mother was that the original doctor did not know what went went wrong. The risk manager was real proud of having been able to pull the info off his company computer which I think was linked to some kind of insurance company/medical database. So I asked him why the doctor hadn't done the same thing. If he had, he could have diagnosed the problem ASAP and my mother would have had to go thru a lot less fear and pain. He got this real amazed look on his face like it had just never occurred to him that the database could be used to help in diagnoses. We settled out of court. parsy.
posted on 07/14/2002 12:03:28 PM PDT
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