After serving more than four
decades as a clinical engineer and in related industry roles, I’ve become and
remain a great believer in the benefit of the proliferating technological
advances in the field of medicine. I do believe we have the possibility
of our offering higher quality, lower cost health care to an ever growing
portion of the world’s population.
However I am not naïve. The
hoped for benefits from technological advances are not guaranteed. We
need to be mindful that technological innovations are neither inherently
positive … nor negative. It is only in how they are applied
that we see the true nature and benefit of those “advances.”
Netflix’ recently released its
original documentary, The Bleeding Edge. Everyone in the
healthcare industry, including clinical engineers and other healthcare
technology professionals, should watch this documentary. It is a cautionary
tale of how technological advances in medicine can go horribly wrong when we
become blindly enamored with innovation, profits, and unfettered
deregulation. Most who buy into the adoption of these technological
advances do so with the best of intent. A smaller but still influential
number are more focused on the industry growth and profitably.
We as clinical engineers and
healthcare technology professionals must ensure we are the voice of reason
when selecting which new technologies to adopt and that we make clear what
exactly must be done to deploy and support new technologies that are adopted.
The Bleeding Edge is a
reminder that it is the patient we are truly here to serve … and it is
the patient who ultimately benefits … or suffers … based on how we and our
other colleagues in medical device manufacturing, regulation and healthcare
delivery do our jobs.
Go to https://www.netflix.com/title/80170862