In this day and age are records still being kept in files on some dusty shelves in a room or a cabinet? With the boom in this technological era the medical field has caught on and is using technology to its advantage. I have been to hospitals where records are kept in a database. Computers are assigned to the patient’s room where their information is recorded at every step in their medical treatment at the hospital. This practice is not widespread in the world and worst of all in Jamaica but many doctors’ office or hospital system have switched their medical records from these stacks of papers to computer files. In the United States more than half the physicians are keeping electronic medical records and approximately 80% of the hospitals have gone digital. A system is even in place to increase Medicare payment each year the records are not filed in an electronic system.
Online Medical records can improve the health of patients. It may not be a cure for diseases but it can help cut the problems such as duplicate tests and prescription errors. Electronic prescription forms according to Michael Painter can guard against incorrect dosages and harmful interactions with other medications. Hospitals that have advanced systems that incorporate online medical records will make it easier for patients to view their records. This can improve the health system as catching potential mistakes or easily pulling a lab record to show another specialist can make a big difference to patient care.
Having Medical Records online can become a potential hazard or disaster also. There will always be dishonest, unscrupulous entities who always want to destroy systems, companies or individuals. Digitizing records does not keep these prying eyes out of person’s information. Hackers will always be there to infiltrate a system and breach security and privacy. On the other hand, electronic records are not immune to mistakes. Wrong data can be entered causing problems in the entire network of information. As doctors enter patient’s information on a system, these patients may read the notes and be tempted to research their condition and improperly self –medicate. This definitely will cause more bad than good. Read the rest of this entry »
The flat world is a concept developed by Tom Friedman which suggests that “the global competitive playing field is being levelled. He has reasoned that there are events that have created this shift, events such as the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989. He call this “ The New Age of Creativity : when the walls came down and the Windows went up” During this period Microsoft had a breakthrough with Windows 3.0 causing a revolution making it easier for people to use this operating systems and are given tools to author and share information faster and easier. Another event was Netscape going public in 1995. Creating another change that brought about the World Wide Web –“The New Age of Connectivity” Read the rest of this entry »
Privacy and big data Veronica Dixon-Haase Big data is a term given to the great amount of data that is created by companies, organizations and individuals. This data is so huge that it would take immeasurable time to enter it into a database for analysis. Data in this era has become so much that when we speak of its quantity it is referred to as s petabytes and Exabyte of data. The idea of Big Data is to look at patterns and how data is generated, stored and used efficiently. If this data is not managed properly it can cause problems. The real issue is that every minute of the day Exabyte of data is stored. Through Big Data, data is stored and distributed on several hundred computers, making it accessible to the world. Privacy as suggested by Terence Graig is like a horse that has left the stable. He says the idea that we can keep data hidden or private is futile. Since we have crossed the border in the exchange of information there is nothing private, this has been erased by the technology “internet”. There is nothing that can truly be done to have total privacy in this digitized era. The only way to experience this privacy is not to be on the internet, not to use cards or do anything at all that requires technology. And this is totally impossible, because every aspect of our existence requires the use of some form of technology. Once you enter the realm of using technology in this society your data is globally wide open, all of it is literally transparent. The United States government have introduced a variety of bills to address the issue of privacy and the use of technology that fall in the realms of Big Data, one of which is the Mobile Device Privacy Act. This was more complicated than using the cell phone. The effort proved empty as it would have to seek to cross geolocation. A lot of suggest that are made to put privacy policies in place are more expensive than the companies involved. So this is placed on the back burner all. And so Big Data continues to gather and analyse at the cost of everyone else. Privacy will soon become a thing of the past. It’s like we have been going around in circles trying to figure out what to do to secure privacy. But in my estimation this has gone through the door with the emergence of technology especially that of the internet. Anything you do on-line is recorded somehow, somewhere. There is literally no one accountable. The government gathers for their purpose, so do businesses and other entities. When this is done your information will be seeped elsewhere and may be in the wrong hands. I think we just have to embrace the era that we have come to live in and realize that we have become one big family where everyone knows your business. So, in other words whatever we put out there in the public or on line know that, what it is public information. My question is how devices invade our privacy. In essence it is our counterparts, our colleagues, other humans that do the invasion. We are the ones who manipulate the data through what is programmed in the software or Big Data. As long as we use these devices our privacy is shot. There is nothing we can do about privacy because somehow that information will be out there. I have come to realize that this world is just a little speck; everyone in it through technology has actually become little specks in one cell. Reference
- Barlow, M. (2013). The culture of big data. O’REILLY
- Pavolotsky, J. (2013). Privacy in the Age of Big Data. Business Lawyer, 69(1), 217-225.
- Rouse, M. (March 8, 2011). Big Data (BIG DATA). Retrieved on April 2, 2014 from http://searchcloudcomputing.techtarget.com/definition/big-data-Big-Data