Distractions for Doctors

       Technology in medicine has seen the boom and bang of the gold rush in the mid-1800's. It has helped to advance new diagnostic techniques and enabled doctors to have the entire library of medicine at their finger tips. But like many revelations technology is a double edged sword, on the one hand physicians can stay up to date in their field...on the other it appears physicians are sometimes caught in the act of multi-tasking when it is inappropriate.

      In the New York Times today their was an article on the potential for distractions, specifically in the OR when surgeons are on the phone taking calls or nurses surfing the web looking at plane ticket prices. While at first this sounds egregiously, I was talking to a neurosurgeon today and she said that of course everyone uses their phones in the OR. All surgeons do is sit in the OR, if they did not take calls in the OR then when would they communicate to other people?

     On the one hand when I am under a surgeon's knife I would like to believe that the physician is focusing all their directed attention on me. But they are people too and have responsibilities that lie beyond me. So I understand that, but fundamentally physicians 5 years ago did not have all these luxuries and were able to get by just fine. So I believe that technology has the opportunity to aid medicine but physicians should take it upon themselves to use the new devices at their discretion.

  Link to the article: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/12/15/health/as-doctors-use-more-devices-potential-for-distraction-grows.html?_r=1&ref=health