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Windows 7: iDoctor: Could a smartphone be the future of medicine?

05 Feb 2013   #11
Microsoft MVP

Windows 7 Ultimate X64 SP1
 
 

This is a new technology still in embryo form not even infancy yet. Could be the forerunner of a tricorder of sorts.
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05 Feb 2013   #12

W7 X-64 W8.1 X-64 Opensuse 13.1 W2003 Server
 
 

Hi there
not wanting to decry the efforts of a lot of basic medical doctors - but I've often thought 99% of the diagnostics could be done via some sort of machine - possibly like the one suggested by the OP.

For those cases that seem more complex then a specialist should be referred to. That's what generally happens at a standard medical practice anyway.

IMO most doctors are actually grossly overpaid for what they REALLY have to do -- the worst that happens is they visit some emergency by a home visit, prescribe a few pills or if the patient looks really ill then they just call an ambulance.

Plenty of other people work "unsocial hours" -- paramedics, electricity workers, Police, oil rig workers, even some railway engineers etc etc.

Sorry "General Practitioners" -- I think you are over paid and over valued in a job which can be highly automated these days. Even in a Hospital I reckon some of these "Basic Tasks" could quite easily be delegated to senior nursing / ward staff.

Apart on the rare occasions when I've needed some form to be signed by a Doctor I've found I can often get better treatment and advice from the Local Vicar. !!!(And it's free too !!).

Cheers
jimbo
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05 Feb 2013   #13

Windows 8.1 Pro RTM x64
 
 

Thank goodness we have a health service, even though its routines and procedures seem to be a bit long-winded at times. I can certainly vouch for it ATM. As regards being overpaid, there surely is no profession that is as grossly overpaid as footballers, some of whom earn (and I use the term earn very loosely) more in a single week than many of us do in a lifetime of hard graft.
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05 Feb 2013   #14

Windows 8 - 64-bit
 
 

I see this as a reality before long. Many will scoff, so did people when the Wright Brothers built and flew the first airplane, this won't take that long to start happening, on a large scale.
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05 Feb 2013   #15

Desk1 8 Pro / Desk2 7 Home Prem / Laptop 8.1 Pro all 64bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by jimbo45 View Post
Hi there
not wanting to decry the efforts of a lot of basic medical doctors - but I've often thought 99% of the diagnostics could be done via some sort of machine - possibly like the one suggested by the OP.

For those cases that seem more complex then a specialist should be referred to. That's what generally happens at a standard medical practice anyway.

IMO most doctors are actually grossly overpaid for what they REALLY have to do -- the worst that happens is they visit some emergency by a home visit, prescribe a few pills or if the patient looks really ill then they just call an ambulance.

Plenty of other people work "unsocial hours" -- paramedics, electricity workers, Police, oil rig workers, even some railway engineers etc etc.

Sorry "General Practitioners" -- I think you are over paid and over valued in a job which can be highly automated these days. Even in a Hospital I reckon some of these "Basic Tasks" could quite easily be delegated to senior nursing / ward staff.

Apart on the rare occasions when I've needed some form to be signed by a Doctor I've found I can often get better treatment and advice from the Local Vicar. !!!(And it's free too !!).

Cheers
jimbo
I agree with you to a point Jim and after 40+ years in nursing I have worked with more docs than I care to think about.

Yes the ones that work in the cities in those fancy med centres yes they are really well paid but in the rural areas when they are it - no amount of money would induce em to do what they do your social and private life are crap and there is always a constant flow of fools and idiots who expect them to jump to their tunes.
Their job is 24/7 and I know for a fact that they are not paid that well the problem lies with the "specialists" and others who rely on their junior staff to carry out their job while blithely proclaiming their "expertise" which in my mind is not so ruddy expertise from what I have seen.

I don't agree with the 99% of diagnostic powers of devices either a great deal of diagnostic skill comes with experience, hands on, and good old gut feeling - something a machine will never have. Yes they are good aids but I doubt anyone here or indeed anywhere would happily entrust their life to some robotic machine entirely and if they would then all I can say is more fool them.
Until you have felt an irregular pulse or watched erratic respirations then I suppose these devices sound real cool but accurate they might be in number crunching but in the real world have a VERY long way to go, and besides I don't have to have to be hooked up to some power source or ely on my "caps" staying intact or my CPU and chips staying at the right temps

Rant over.
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06 Feb 2013   #16

x64 (6.3.9600) Win8.1 Pro & soon dual boot x64 (6.1.7601) Win7_SP1 HomePrem
 
 

The best doctors know their patients and they are healers. Their third eye sees more than any machine.

I am not a healthcare consumer, I am a human being, I am a patient. Too many doctors are in the healthcare industry, not the healthcare profession.

I think remote diags would give more people access to good doctors and give good doctors more time to "see" more patients. One added benefit is that people who are ill sitting around in waiting rooms spread illness - remote diags eliminate one cause of cross contamination.
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07 Feb 2013   #17

W7 X-64 W8.1 X-64 Opensuse 13.1 W2003 Server
 
 

Hi there
I'm not saying we should do away with Doctors -- but surely as a IST approximation there's nothing wrong in automating the process WHERE POSSIBLE. This could eliminate a lot of the unnecessary load -- and ease the load on "Humans" who could do the stuff that can't be handled by machines.

People would still have the right to consult a REAL doctor --but I'll bet that in loads of cases where people start using automatic diagnostic aids and get decent and accurate results from them trust in the system will increase dramatically.

There are huge numbers of women for example at home who use "self pregnancy tests" - even 20 years ago this would have been regarded with horror --now it's a matter of routine.

My (although somewhat limited) experience with a typical doctors practice is that a lot of people are in there either to get a sick note signed off or just to have a chat.

I'm quite sure a Doctor would much rather a patient coming in saying I think I've got A, B and C --here are the machine readings -- the doctor could make a really quick assessment and decide if further escalation was necessary. The skill of course is in using the expertise to find out what's wrong in the UNUSUAL cases and either solve or pass up to the next person able to deal with the issue.

Most Men are usually paranoid about going to a Doctor anyway -- if decent machines could be developed the number of cases of Bowel Cancer could probably be diagnosed and treated really quickly -- a self test like the pregnancy test that a man could do at home regularly instead of waiting until symptoms actually appear would IMO be a huge life saver.

We shouldn't be scared of technology --so long as it SERVES US and not the other way around.

Problem is that companies tend to use technology to "cut costs" rather than serve any useful purpose which gives automation a bad name and the public aren't educated to use it properly either -- a typical example are those horrible automated checkouts in supermarkets --sometimes having a bit of banter with the sales staff adds to the fun of a visit to the supermarket which isn't a particularly enjoyable task.

Railway station automated ticket systems seem to be a particularly bad case of automation -- people just stare blankly at the machine and scroll backwards and forwards for ages even when wanting something simple like SINGLE TICKET KINGS X to YORK AT CHEAPEST PRICE" -- it's a main line station so shouldn't be hard.

Instead of the stupid touch screen - often barely visisble -- perhaps people should be able to SPEAK their request into the machine and then just insert their payment card. Having multiple languages would be really simple too -- what's the physical size of a 32 GB micro sd card anyway - and we aren't needing high quality uncompressed FLAC sound either.

(Ok some adjustments for Blind / deaf passengers but 99% of cases could be done via the voice mechanism and if these were good and quick enough you could still have a few "old fashioned ticket booths" for other cases).

Designing a machine is usually simple enough -- it's how the user is expected to interact with it is the part that takes the skill - and this requires a bit more than just looking purely at "the cost cutting" element.

Does anybody for example on this entire planet think automated call centres give a good customer experience !!!

Cheers
jimbo
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07 Feb 2013   #18

Desk1 8 Pro / Desk2 7 Home Prem / Laptop 8.1 Pro all 64bit
 
 

Well I must apologise Jimbo for my unwarranted outburst but as a Registered Nurse of 40+ years I have to say I felt like most were dismissing health professionals per se and I have to say though that we as the coal face workers probably have more skills at finding and dealing with problems than even doctors do because we are far more hands on than they are for the best part of the time.
They also rely a great deal on our observations (beit with instruments our our senses) , judgements, and with some of the better ones our own personal opinions on an individuals condition/s, and what maybe the best line of treatment to take.
I have to say too that if one really looks at health care in general then anything that is remotely medical based is seen as a cash cow and now there is a move towards metal instruments that we use in day to day treatments are now a throw away item.
I just think that we are becoming a little complacent in thinking that mobile devices are going to be infallible and that technology is the begin all and end all. Should I dare to compare it with the Hubble telescope look at the money that was poured into that and get it to get where it was supposed to be only to find it didn't function properly, and then spend another fortune to put it right, What I am saying is that technology can only give us pointers at best the real basic and fundamental care will always be human based.
Yes I will admit some doctors are obscenely overpaid and that health care is seen as I said like a cash cow to be milked for all it is worth, and that is something that should be addressed but sadly I see that health care will always be money driven while there are people who can afford the outrageous prices and those who cannot.
I don't know about anyone else but I feel a lot of health resources are wasted in trivial matters like plastic surgery and botoxing and when that goes wrong the tax paying public having to foot the bill to put it right. But I am ranting again suffice to say health care will never be equal for all.
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