What would you do?

2.  You have been diagnosed with a rare bone marrow disorder that affects only 2 people out of 1 million. The disease is potentially life threatening, but your symptoms are currently only mild and do not yet present a major concern. Your physician recommends that you go to the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, for further diagnosis and possible treatment. As you do some research on the Internet, you find a support group for those afflicted by this rare disease. You are alarmed to hear that the disease can cause a very rapid decrease in the quality of one’s life, with many victims confined to a wheelchair or bed and in great discomfort for the last months of their life. When you meet with specialists at the Mayo Clinic, they provide a much more optimistic outlook and claim that medical breakthroughs in treating the disease have been made. You do not know what to believe. You wonder about reaching out to the support group to get further information or to convey what doctors have told you. What would you do?

I would live to the fullest as much as I am able to. Treat each day as it were my last, right some wrongs, and try to make the bet of an awful situation.


7. You are an elected official in a small, third-world country’s house of parliament, which is responsible for initiating revenue spending bills. Your country is very poor; unemployment is high; most families cannot afford a healthy diet; there is an insufficient amount of doctors and healthcare services; and there is an inadequate infrastructure for water, telephone, and power. Recently, senior executives from technology firms have approached you and lobbied you strongly to support increased spending on information technology infrastructure, including the placement of 1 million low-cost computers in your nation’s schools. They make a strong case that the computers will increase the educational opportunities for your nation’s children. They are willing to subsidize one-half of the estimated $1 billion (USD) required to implement this program successfully. While their idea provides hope for a better life for the children, your country has many needs. How would you proceed to evaluate this opportunity and weigh its costs against your country’s other needs?

Technology is my passion; it is very important but there are things that are more important. Clean water, food, shelter, and medical care are far more important than technology. I would encourage management to adjust the money they are allocating more towards the basic human needs rather than technology. I agree that technology would improve the populations quality of live but the management is addressing problem ‘J’ before they have fixed problems ‘A, B, and C.’





2. Kaiser Permanente Implements Electronic Health Record (EHR) System

1. What do you think are the greatest benefits of the HealthConnect system for Kaiser Permanente subscribers? Can you identify any potential risks or ethical issues associated with the use of this system for Kaiser healthcare plan subscribers? How would you answer these questions from the perspective of a physician or nurse?

The most useful feature would be to allow users to access their health records on demand. The greatest concern would be to secure the users data. A data breach can cripple a service and users would no longer trust the service.

2. This system took over seven years to implement and is estimated to have cost at least $4.2 billion. Would you say that this was a wise investment of resources for Kaiser Permanente? Why or why not?

Yes, the upfront cost is high but once its implemented, the cost savings will happen once users start using the service. The users will enjoy the service and that will increase revenue.

3. Researchers associated with Kaiser Permanente have used the patient record database to make numerous worthwhile discoveries in the areas of preventing whooping cough, determining the correlation between HPV vaccination and sexual activity in young girls, improving methods of cancer detection, avoiding blood clots in women using birth control pills, and lowering cholesterol. Do you think that access to this valuable data should be granted to researchers not associated with Kaiser Permanente? What potential legal and ethical issues could arise if this were done? Should researchers be charged a fee to access this data to help offset the ongoing cost of upgrading the system?

I think the patients should be given the option to grant researchers access to their data. No one should have access to patient record except for the user and the health care providers. I feel a fee based system could be implemented and useful.


3. Decision Support for Healthcare Diagnosis

1. What concerns might a physician have about using a decision support system such as Isabel or Watson to make a medical diagnosis? How might those concerns be alleviated?

Using a super-computer to make medical diagnoses could be beneficial and help alleviate the burden on the medical staff.

2. Is it possible that in a decade this type of technology could be easily accessible by laypeople who could then perform self-diagnosis, thus helping to reduce the cost of medical care?

Of course, I feel this technology will be available sooner than a decade. Technology is moving forward faster than ever. With the addition of super-computers, this could reduce the cost of medical care.

3. Does the use of decision support systems to support healthcare decisions seem like an effective way to reduce healthcare costs? Why or why not?

I feel that is could reduce the cost of medical care cost in the future.  There would be upfront costs involved, but once those expenses have been recouped, the profit would be recognized.