Google Tool Could Search Out Hospital Superbugs

An article at NewScientist talks about utilising Google’s PageRank algorithm to help focus preventative measures more accurately by identifying key routes of infection and transmission. This in my opinion is an effective utilisation of existing proven technology as an enabler. 🙂

There are tons of technology out there that could be adopted by healthcare, sometimes, all we need is a little innovation, as well as co-operation from the physicians. Physicians have no time waste in participating with technology trials that may not necessary translate to an immediate clinical benefit, this is understandable (its like me hating to talk to my financial advisor) but it is a ‘necessary evil’ as they are one of a key adopters of healthcare informatics.

Anyway, one particular sentence in the article caught my eye “While studies have taken samples to discover how particular objects, like doctors’ neckties, can harbour infection“. Back while I was working in a hospital, I raised the question of why we have to wear ties when it serves as a carrier of germs (do you wash your tie?) only to be told that it is required as a ‘Professional” (since when was professionalism measured by wearing ties?).

This reminds me of situations where IT departments have purchasing decisions on behalf of clinical systems, they harp on all sort of ‘what if’ situations (mostly due to ‘threats’ from their existing infrastructure) and make you spend 90% of your time fixing those ‘problems’ when the whole idea of implementing these systems is to improve patient care and save lives.

I’m not saying that we shouldn’t be concerned about IT issues (mind you, I’m a true blue techie) but sometimes, the objective gets clouded in the process.

Ah well, thats enough for now, till my next post. “)

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About Adam Chee

Health Informatician
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