A 1982 editorial in the British Medical Journal began: “Two assumptions seem to underlie all conferences on computers and medicine: first, that their wholesale introduction into all medical activities is inevitable; and secondly that they will be of great benefit.”1 Although the wholesale introduction of computers has not occurred and may not be inevitable, it is apparent that no field of medicine can escape the growing influence of computer technology. The practice of medicine has clearly entered the computer age. Computer technology has rapidly spread throughout both the academic and the private sectors: from the wards to the office to the coat pocket, computer technology is ubiquitous. Examples include the microprocessor-based watch or pager, the hospital information terminal where we get the laboratory or imaging results, or the security pad that lets us into the hospital after hours.
KeywordsMedical Informatics Electronic Mail Computerize Medical Record Private Practice Setting Schedule Pattern
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- 1.Smith R: Computers in Medicine: Searching for the rainbow and the pot of gold. Br Med J 284:1859, 1982.Google Scholar