Journey into “Why Doctors Hate Their Computer”

On this Software Development Capstone journey part of this week assignment is to read an article about  “Why Doctors Hate Their Computers” by Atul Gawande, from the November 12, 2018 issue of The New Yorker. For this blog rather than writing a summary of what I just read with my reaction of it I would be doing a Q&A that was assigned by my professor. If you are interested in the story click on the link above to read the article.

What did you find interesting, useful, thought-provoking about the reading?

I found the idea that the Electronic Medical Record System should be more adaptive interesting. Meaning it should have the ability for mutation and selection. That way it could weed out bad ideas or practices. This is useful and thought-provoking because when developing software I should try to allowing my software to be able to some how have the ability of selection and not just mutation. I also, found what Greg Meyer said “If computerization causes doctors some annoyance but improves patient convenience and saves lives, Meyer is arguing, isn’t it time we all got on board?”, what he said was interesting, useful and thought-provoking. I another thing I found interesting a thought-provoking was the fact that doctors would spend a lot time behind a computer screen rather than with the patients.

What tensions caused the system to make doctors’ lives harder, rather than easier?

The system had a lot of things that made lives for doctors’ harder rather than easier. It did this by making simple things such as “viewing test results” difficult. This was done whenever searching for one thing a column of other identical terms would be showed on a tab to the left of the screen. Another thing was, the system tools made entering information more difficult and often made doctors irritable. The doctors’ found these tools requirement to be a nuances and time-consuming. The system also, increase work for physician causing them to spend extra time doing computer work. This system made finding patient history difficult. Once patient history was found there were often times where there was a lot of useless reading to do… since, some doctors would just copy and paste information. When it came to diagnoses the system would allow doctors to give patients the same diagnoses with different names. The problem list would be redundant and useless. The relative details would not often be posted. A lot of the things the system provided was either useless, pointless, and time-wasting causing doctors’ lives to be a lot harder.

Who do you feel was the real customer for the system? Why?

In a way I feel that the real customer for the system was the patients. The reason being that the system made it easier for the patient to view their own charts and receive better care. However, the system in some ways made work more difficult and more time-consuming for the medical personal such as the physician.

Do the lessons from the implementation of this system apply to only Electronic Medical Record systems?

The lessons from the implementation of the system does not apply only to Electronic Medical Record systems. It apply to many other type of system.

Has the reading caused you to change your opinion, the way you think about the topic, or how you work?

This topic did not really changed my opinion or the way I think about this topic. The only thing I might had changed would be the way I work. Since, I would try to make sure that when ever developing a software it must be efficient for everyone using it.

Do you disagree with something in the reading? And why?

There is honestly nothing disagreeable about this reading. The system talked about in this article has its flaws but it is outweighed by its advantages.

This article was pretty informing and pointed out problems that I honestly was not aware of. This sums up My reaction the article “Why Doctors Hate Their Computers” by Atul Gawande. Thank you for your time. This has been YessyMer in the World Of Computer Science, until next time.


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