Research Blog 6

Source #1 

Can the power of mobile phones be used to improve tuberculosis diagnosis in developing countries?

This article discusses the use of telemedicine with remote image viewing is a valuable and versatile tool. Tuberculosis currently affects approximately one-third of the world’s population. Therefore, the authors of this article are eager to study the use of mobile phones to diagnose, monitor, and manage several infectious and noninfectious diseases. The specific example given in this article surrounds the subject of tuberculosis. A program called Microscopic Observation Drug Susceptibility (MODS) is used for accurate and fast diagnosis and drug susceptibility information. This research study states that the image cultures produced by this program can be transmitted through mobile phones or a web server in order to reach qualified doctors abroad. This is a prime example to portray how technology is influencing the medicine field in a positive way. If mobile phones are now advanced enough to be able to transmit culture screenings and allow doctors to assess individuals living in third world countries, multiple people will benefit.

Source #2 

The Next Cybersecurity Target: Medical Data

The article “The Next Cybersecurity Target: Medical Data” explains the dangers of having medical data stored online. However, in this day and age it is unimaginable to solely have paper documenting in hospitals due to the lack of efficiency this method possesses. An important quote I noticed in the article was, “the healthcare system is not immune to attacks.” An example of this potential situation in the article discussed the health insurance system. Health insurance companies hold the data of millions and millions of individuals financial, health, and personal  information. This relates to my overall topic because of technological dependence in the healthcare system to store records. Storing files on online databases can make hospitals and patients vulnerable to cyberattacks. If this were to happen, the hospital affected would be negatively impacted and most likely shut down for a long period of time.

Source #3 

Smartphones are Revolutionizing Medicine

The article “Smartphones are revolutionizing medicine” is about how far mobile phones have already gone in improving the health of many. Recently, Apple’s new iOS software came out with the health app that acts as a pedometer, counts calories, and measures heartbeats. Additionally, in the realm of telemedicine, the microphone can assist in diagnosing asthma and COPD. It is also possible to use the camera and the powerful flashlight that most smartphones now have to diagnose blood disorders including iron and hemoglobin deficiencies. A specific example given in the article focuses on how diabetes patients can benefit from health behaviors being monitored on smartphones. Many doctors advocate that diabetes patients need to become their own detectives. This means, it is beneficial for them to know their calorie intake, number of steps taken, and heart rate. This example shows that although this would increase the time an individual spent on their phone, it would cause positive health outcomes.

What connections are you noticing between sources you’ve found so far?

All of the sources I have found encourage the use of technology in medicine. Additionally, many of them bring up the fact that money is saved by using these techniques. However, I have noticed that most sources do not talk about patient satisfaction as a result of using mobile phones to treat conditions.

What else do the above sources make you want to know? Search for next?

I am eager to know more about how insurance companies are affected by increases in telemedicine. By using these strategies, there are less hospital visits and admissions. Therefore, I would like to know how telemedicine is billed as well as how insurance companies keep track of it.

How is your topic changing as you learn more about it?  What does this help you to understand about the research process? Do you need to make changes/adjust/revise your guiding question?  Explain.

My topic has changed immensely since the start of the research process. I started out with the topic of how technology impacts productivity in the workplace. Once I thought more about my personal interests and researched medicine and productivity in relation to technology, I was opened up to an entire new realm of information regarding telemedicine, mobile phone triage, and numerous other facets to technology in the medical field. I believe that as I continue my research I will have to narrow down my topic.

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