On the wall above the patient in my trainers office, in large capital letters was written “Every Patient Deserves and Examination”.
IT or Information Technology has been a great failure in the Health Services so far. There are potential benefits, and high risks.
If there are going to be too few doctors, and especially GPs they need to work smarter. New symptom checker systems could improve speed and access if used properly. What the doctor offers is a differential diagnosis, judgement in use of tests to determine the exact diagnosis, and treatment options. To achieve this he needs to Examine the Patient. If your GP never examines you he is reducing his specialist skills to those of a computer and/or robot. GPs need to retain the skills to do all appropriate examinations, including rectal and internal examinations. It could save a lot of resources if a member of each practice learned to do endoscopy and sigmoidoscopies, and another to do Ultrasound Scans. These examinations/tests would increase speed in diagnosis. Unfortunately the trend is going the other way. Male doctors in particular are not doing internals when they could help assess the possibility of ovarian/uterine causes for symptoms. They refer on, either to a colleague or a specialist and this wastes time. USS and other (CAT and MRI) investigations and out patient appointments all have waiting times… Ray Charles has his opinion, but its not mine (Ray Charles I Don’t Need No Doctor – YouTube).
If the risks are to be addressed then the Health Services will need a team of experts, constantly trying to break in, just as the big public companies have, and insurance is another matter!
Richard and Daniel Susskind opine in the Harvard Business Review October 2016: Technology Will Replace Many Doctors, Lawyers, and Other Professionals
Mark Bridge in the Times 28th April reports: Hospitals held to ransom as state hackers step up attacks
Do you really have confidence in your records being confidential? Do Hospital Trusts have cyber insurance?
NHS data-sharing project scrapped – another opportunity missed..
Incompetents lead IT change into vast cash losses, and need to be disbanded. This is one area which should be privatised..
Increasing incompetence: Another NHS crisis looms – an inability to analyse data
Electronic Medical Records A Disappointment In The USA
Jeremy Hunt has enlisted a US professor to review the digital future of the NHS to keep it from falling into “elephant traps”
Doctors should have electronic records everywhere possible. It will reduce mistakes and litigation. GPs have been paperless for 20 years..
The Future for our Health Services
Health & Social Care Information Centre
The worried well demand more in a free service.. More information is good, it’s the perverse nature and philosophy of the health services that needs to change.
Too much technology? Its no good protesting – but it would be good to discuss exactly where spending is best directed.
Evidence basis is needed for all treatments – and confirmation by independent third party. Hospitals and pysicians collude to waste money.
How the NHS Wales wastes money on bureaucrats in non-jobs yet has lethally long waiting lists that would shame a Third World country
Ditching ineffective ways of working (Work Smarter in GP)
Symptom Checker | The one the doctors use