Cyber Tech in Patient-Physician Relationships
We believe the 20th century was one of technology development, and the 21st century is focused on appropriate and relevant application of technology. The technology in cyber-social health systems promised increased efficiency, improved effectiveness, fewer errors, and global connectivity. However, we’re now aware of the unintended consequences. In modern medicine, particularly in the hospital, the bed-ridden patient has become an icon for computerized patient data - an entity we’ve termed the “iPatient”. The iPatient receives the undivided attention of the medical team, is the subject of discussions on cyber-social medical systems about their medical images and more. The integration of human patients and doctors with medical cyber technologies, such as the electronic patient record and networked tools recording medical data, form a cyber-social medical system. In this system, often the human patient experiences abandonment and wonders - where are the doctors? What is going on? What is the plan? Who is in charge? The disjunction between the patient’s experiences of inattentiveness is at odds with the physicians’ perception of being very attentive (to the patient’s data), and of providing good medical care. We believe this disconnect stems from the idea that knowledge and data don’t translate to wisdom, a key component in the art of medicine.
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