• Question: How useful is new technology (eg.Robotics) in helping you do your job?

    Asked by JWattam to Phil, Kit, Deborah, Charnelle, Ali, Adrian on 10 Nov 2017.
    • Photo: Philip Williams

      Philip Williams answered on 10 Nov 2017:

      The NHS is really not good at harnessing even 20th century technology! We are only just beginning to use text messaging & emails to their full potential in general practice. Hospitals still use paper based notes largely, and almost never use electronic prescribing which is much safer with automatic alerts if two medications clash. I think we’ll see this improve steadily over the next 10 years with patients getting more access to their own medical record, and you can now order your medication and book GP appointments online.

    • Photo: Kit Tigwell

      Kit Tigwell answered on 10 Nov 2017:

      Medical technologies develop quickly but the wheels of change are definitely slow in such a big organisation as the NHS! Robotic surgery is becoming more common and helps with tricky operations in parts of the body that are hard to access without making big scars and other problems, like the neck. The advantage is quicker recovery and less time in hospital, but the downside is it’s very expensive and not as efficient when it’s new.
      Generally new technology is helping in all sorts of areas from better instruments & joint replacements, more capable equipment like ventilators, more effective drugs and even better software for computers (but that’s very debatable!). It all comes at a high price though.

    • Photo: Deborah Draycott

      Deborah Draycott answered on 10 Nov 2017:

      I think we are very slow to move with modern technology. Having said that we are paper light in the community, all my notes are computer records and we prescribe electronically. Patients can book appointments and order medicines on line as well as seeing their own records. What drives me mad is that we don’t seem to be able to share hospital and GP records yet, even something as simple as blood test results can be a major problem and patients often end up getting tests duplicated which seems very unfair for them.
      Hopefully things will move on and I know technology is definitely moving forward in helping us diagnose illness sooner and monitor treatments more effectively in many other ways.

    • Photo: Adrian Taylor

      Adrian Taylor answered on 13 Nov 2017:

      If the technology is better and safer than the old fashion pen, then yes, but getting people to change is often the hard bit. In the two years I’ve been here we have almost become paperless, but it takes time a patience to bring about lasting change, if you rush people they just resist.