During a conversation with a friend last week I had a hare-brained thought – not rare, as friends know, but this one was thought-provoking. So, patients and providers and everyone else, let’s talk about this:
If diagnosis magically became automated – if some super-test could suddenly identify exactly what your condition is – what are the other skills that would keep clinicians employed?
I know it’s a long list because I’ve spent plenty of hours with providers, I love ‘em, and hardly EVER has it been for one of them to say “Dude, you’ve got X.”
So, patients: what skills do you appreciate, or do you wish you had more of? And providers – can you help by listing the things you do?
For this exercise I don’t mean bureaucracy – filling out forms etc. I mean the stuff you were trained to do in medical school.
I’ll start with a few:
- Knowing the treatment options
- Prescribing, including leading us through the options
- Caring (in all its forms).
- Detecting when the robot’s diagnosis is wrong
- Refining the diagnosis – subtypes, whatever
- Follow-up / monitoring status
I know med school & nursing school included a lot more than that :) … please leave a comment to make the list grow.
(I hope it’s obvious that I have no covert agenda here – this all came up when someone said “Will IBM Watson do diagnosis?” and I said no, IBM will only let it dish up information, not “play doctor.” But it raised the question, what if diagnosis did have an automated perfect answer?)