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Comment: Re:Why store the patient's Age instead of Birth Da (Score 1) 183

What doctors have you been talking to? Doctors definitely DO NOT like entering text. If they are typing out pages and pages of stuff, hopefully it's because that is relevant information.

That said, I think the summary is talking about when physicians copy and paste histories from one note into the next. The history and presentation probably hasn't changed, so why type it all out again? Just copy and paste! However, then you run into the problem when the history starts off with "Mr Slashdot is a 36 year old man with herpes, etc etc". Then the patient seemingly doesn't age according to the text, but they obviously are in the structured data portion of the EMR... This copy and paste also leads to propagation of errors. I once saw a chart where a patient had received 2 bone marrow transplants in the past (not unheard of). I went back through the chart to find out when those were and what the complications were, and it turns out someone had a made a typo years before and it had continued, not just in one department, but other departments were copying and pasting the same error in their notes too! Madness...

Comment: Re:Usability metrics, anyone? (Score 1) 183

I also spend a good deal of time combing through charts and it IS infuriating! I got some reports from another hospital one time, and except for the envelope in which it came, there was no way to tell where care was being given, just from the notes/reports alone. No letterhead, logo, institution name or anything. There doesn't seem to be a regulation, rule, or best practices scheme for what information should be included in every note, report, chart, result. IMHO, every page printed out should have the patient's name, DOB, MRN, page numbers (the lack of which has caused me a headache or two), and a clear designation of where this note came from: institution, department, service, attending physician, and type of document (H&P, progress note, lab result, etc).

Comment: Re:Don't fix what ain't broke (Score 3, Interesting) 183

I actually am a medical doctor and I can say that the VA EMR is very very good. It's not as shiny or pretty as some others out there, but it's solid, easy to use/learn, interconnected with every VA hospital and it's the same at every VA hospital. The scheduling problems largely revolve around lazy government employees (I'm a govt employee, so I can say that!) and trying to get doctors to work in the VA system. They only recently brought the salaries for physicians, but only for new hires, IIRC. I'm sure THAT's good for morale....

I'm also an armchair bioinformaticist (or whatever) and have seen the coding and modules behind EPIC, one of the most popular and widely-used EMRs around. It IS kludgey! I forget if the inpatient or outpatient systems came first, but the second had to be kludged in. THEN, when you factor in the very widely used radiology information system (PACS) you have to kludge that in. Then you have pathology and lab medicine using an entirely different system (CoPath, Soft, PowerPath, etc) you have to tie that into the EMR and PACS. Sometimes pathology and lab medicine use two entirely different systems, even though they're in the same department!

Yes, it's a mess!

Comment: Apologies from more than just Assange? (Score 4, Insightful) 160

I think Assange SHOULD apologise. After all, he was risking the life of a head of state (admittedly, the risk was probably fairly minimal). That said, it seems like Morales deserves an apology from a lot of countries, including the U.S. Right or wrong, it would be the diplomatic thing to do. Not apologizing just reinforces the perception of the U.S. as imperialist/bullying. It seems like France is the only one to have issued an apology so far...

Comment: Re:Hmmmm (Score 2) 186

by xanthines-R-yummy (#49469267) Attached to: Acetaminophen Reduces Both Pain and Pleasure, Study Finds

No, they are not, as all good scientists are. From the actual journal article:

"Some limitations of our work should be noted. Specifically, we cannot ascertain from the current studies whether acetaminophen might blunt individuals’ attention or motivation to process emotionally evocative stimuli instead of (or in addition to) their evaluative processing of these stimuli."

Honestly, it's a pretty weak self-critique. I wish they had talked more about how meaningful the differences they found were. Yes, the p values were low, so they were statistically significant, but their graphs aren't so impressive to me. Then again, I'm not a psychologist (although I am a MD) and I'm not familiar with their assessment tools (the IAPS picture database?). So what do I know? :)

Comment: Opinion from a scientist (Score 4, Informative) 370

by xanthines-R-yummy (#49421349) Attached to: How the Pentagon Wasted $10 Billion On Military Projects

I am a scientist in real life (yes, biomed PhD and everything) and I would like to offer a different opinion. We spent all this money on something that didn't work. Ok, that's less than desirable. However, I think it's inaccurate to call it a complete waste. For one, it employed people and secondly and maybe most importantly, it funded research, which is almost always a good thing. The only way this would be a complete waste, is if they did not use what they learned from these projects to take with them to the next. That's my real fear: we'll keep spending money in a very inefficient way. My only beef with the whole thing, is that they should have given that $10B to the NIH, NSF, NASA, universities, etc...

Comment: Maybe useful, maybe not effective? (Score 1) 175

It seems like this could be a useful training tool, especially for more complex/dangerous threats like multiple agent terrorist attacks. However, I fail to see how this will improve an agent's ability to stop a guy from jumping a fence and making a break for it. This might be simplistic, but isn't the solution to that problem to keep your eyes open and then radio it in? You know, like every other security job in the country?

Comment: Re:Non Story (Score 2) 163

Came here to say the same thing. If I had mod points, I'd mod you up.

I would also add, that now we know how powerful wide collection nets of metadata can be (eg, NSA surveillance), I wonder if other types of donation, such as bone marrow registries, are going to be subpoenaed and how that will affect donations.

Comment: Re:Sure about the Louvre? (Score 3, Insightful) 183

by xanthines-R-yummy (#49214941) Attached to: Major Museums Start Banning Selfie Sticks

For museums in general, it depends on the exhibit and whether or not the works have been copyrighted. If so, no photography of any kind is allowed. For the Louvre, it seems like most exhibits should allow photography, although not necessarily flash. Even so, it seems like flash photography may not harm paintings after all...

Comment: Re:Default Government Stance (Score 3, Insightful) 194

by xanthines-R-yummy (#49166795) Attached to: Feds Admit Stingray Can Disrupt Bystanders' Communications


Kodos: It's true, we are aliens. But what are you going to do about it? It's a two-party system. You have to vote for one of us.
Man 1: He's right, this is a two-party system.
Man 2: Well I believe I'll vote for a third-party candidate.
Kang: Go ahead, throw your vote away.

Comment: Re:Best idea is not to hide. (Score 1) 247

As others have pointed out, these zombie studies are generally based on epidemic/pandemic disease spread. I think your zombie list is interesting, but all those things are highly dependant on how a zombie outbreak might occur, specifically on modes of transmission. Are you infected if a zombie bites you? What if some blood gets on your skin? Will that infect you? What about in a paper cut? What about if you get zombie blood in your mouth, eyes, or lungs? What happens when you set off a bomb in the middle of a zombie hoard? Did you just aerosolize the zombie virus/particle/whatever? 1 human might kill 3 zombies, but that doesn't do any good if that 1 human becomes a zombie, and the resulting battles infected 10 other human bystanders.

The point is not to kill zombies necessarily, but to contain them, eradicate them and most importantly, not to become one yourself.

Whoever dies with the most toys wins.