Medical Writing Boon And Bane': Term Paper

Length: 3 pages Subject: Healthcare Type: Term Paper Paper: #36094312 Related Topics: Medical School, Medical And Medicine, Medical Technology, Technical Writing
Excerpt from Term Paper :

These examples highlight that technology is always a tool, a way of enhancing human judgment -- we must not mistake it as a replacement for good nursing practice.

After all, the use of a computer is no substitute for a medical education. Anyone who works in a hospital can see this -- the increased accessibility of information through the Internet also means that patients often come in, convinced that they are suffering from a serious illness, allergy, or condition, based more upon a diagnosis Googled on WebMD, rather than upon the fact that they saw a doctor! If a computer alone was required to diagnose, everyone would have a degree!

Don't get me wrong -- I use technology every day in my life, and thank my lucky stars, and my patient's lucky stars, that it is so ubiquitous. When health care providers wish to communicate, the use of cell phones is invaluable, such as when an emergency case is being sent from another hospital. But all of the technology in the world cannot compensate for having a reasonable patient load per nurse. A nurse needs to talk to the patient, to find out about the individual beyond his or her constellation of symptoms during a hospital stay -- and check to see if he or she understands as well as simply receives a


Additionally, although a nurse might be able to contact a doctor at a moment's notice with a cell phone, it is essential that the doctor have the time to devote to the case to provide valuable expertise.

The shift to evidence-based medicine, or medicine squarely grounded in the scientific method, has both corresponded with as well as fueled the enthusiasm for the benefits of technology. But there is also a place for individualization, even intuition that technology cannot provide. While I do not live in fear of being outsourced, I do often wonder if some of my more technologically enthusiastic colleagues have forgotten some of the reasons that people enter medicine in the first place -- like helping patients achieve the best state of health possible, physically, emotionally, and psychologically.

When evidence-based medicine first became popularized, some protested that health care was not a cookbook, an easy series of how-to-steps to achieve a diagnosis. Technology at its worst can make evidence-based style diagnosis and treatment a kind of 'fast food' method of preparation, with everything assembled beforehand, and the nurse simply required to follow the directions. Finding out what a diabetic patient's home cuisine is like, talking to an elderly patient recently diagnosed with cancer to see if an aggressive treatment plan is appropriate, speaking to family members -- all of these take time, and cannot be done through a computer. The fast pace compelled in part by our love with using technological improvement must not make us forget that sometimes it is just as necessary to slow down as to speed up the pace of a…

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