Doctors Without IT
My spouse is a surgical nurse with more than 20 years of experience (Nothing Matters More Than Health Care, Jan. 5). We routinely discuss how the medical profession could benefit by using some of the techniques from my profession, IT. Imagine an X-ray electronically sharpening so you don't need to be a radiologist to read it, change detection being used to locate tumors, or an artificial-intelligence database collecting symptoms and making an accurate diagnosis so the doctor can spend quality time with a patient.
It's time the effective use of IT permeated the medical profession. If business schools can require an MBA student to buy a laptop, why can't a medical school require a doctor to buy a PDA? Sean P. Barrett
Special Projects, Ball Aerospace, Dayton, Ohio
The U.S. health-care system is suffering a multisymptom malady. Among the symptoms are dangerously slow emergency care, error-prone prescription delivery, exorbitant costs, fickle authorization practices, languishing "wellness" programs, and declining health-care clinicians per capita.
There are so many outrageous and intolerant conditions existing in health care, yet Congress does nothing substantial, no one is indicted, costs keep rising, and little or nothing improves. At the very least, this ought to be a fertile market for major business-process reengineering and IT makeover. E. Eric Matus
Senior Systems Analyst, SAIC, San Diego
A Step Back
I enjoyed your profile of Eli Lilly's Roy Dunbar (Dec. 15). I strongly protest, however, the contention that Dunbar's predecessor "updated the company's practices" by moving from Apple computers to Microsoft Windows desktops. Many readers would share my opinion that this was a backward technological move, rather than an upgrade. Ken Field
Principal, Conical Music, Cambridge, Mass.
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