Diagnostic Infrastructure

HM Epstein hmepstein at GMAIL.COM
Thu Feb 4 21:13:44 UTC 2016

Thank you for posting that link. It brings up an excellent point as well for freelance journalist like me. I often have to go to extreme measures to get copies of full studies. Most journalists don't bother which is why consumer press coverage of medical news is often limited to what the press release says. Those of us who like to dig a little deeper lose the ability to do so in a timely fashion in contrast to the echo chamber of most press outlets. 

Now I'm going to check out #ICanHazPDF which the article refers to as an end run around pay walls.


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On Feb 4, 2016, at 3:36 PM, robert bell <0000000296e45ec4-dmarc-request at LIST.IMPROVEDIAGNOSIS.ORG> wrote:

To all on the list.

A friend kindly sent me this:  http://www.brookings.edu/blogs/techtank/posts/2016/01/11-open-access-scientific-knowledge

It seems that much of the information that we see is obtained from Open Access information not from closed source Scientific Journals. Wikipedia editors are 47 percent more likely to use Open Source Journals for their information.

Consequently, the the public and probably also physicians are not getting the very best scientific information in a timely way.

This brings up the issue of what I will call the Diagnostic Medical Infrastructure.

If the infrastructure is not sound, information is not being distributed in the best way to physicians and the public to focus on evidence based medicine, physicians are missing a “raised" PSA test when someone has had a prostatectomy, and a large percentage of radiologists are missing an image of a "Gorilla” on an X-ray, and also a thousand and one other problems, particularly in the communication area, that in turn all lead to error, how can we hope to successfully first tackle diagnostic errors? 

If the current diagnostic error rate on all patients is say 30% would it not be better to get this figure down before focussing on improving diagnoses as a whole? It may be possible to tackle the standard errors and diagnostic errors together in some way but surely some of the standard errors have to be dealt with first to save lives and injury.  

Triaging some of these problems, correcting/improving them, could quickly start reducing the current diagnostic errors.

Should we first be focussing on the Diagnostic Medical Infrastructure?  

Should our focus first be on the best ways to save lives and stop patient injury?

Robert M. Bell, M.D.

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