by Taylor G
Recently in the field of medicine there have been laws passed requiring medical practitioners to upload all of their medical documents to databases. This article talks about new apps that have been developed and have been cleared to be used in offices by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). With these new apps doctors can tell their patients to go and get an MRI scan and the next time the patient comes to his/her office they can pull up the scan with great detail on their iPhone or iPad. Dr. Gagnon, one of the doctors using this new software, thinks that this app will prove useful when he wants to give other doctors immediate access to images to make faster decisions. Mobile MIM, the first company to have their application passed by the FDA, comes in two versions. One for physicians and one for patients. Although, both are initially free, there is a pay-as-you-go charge for storing scans that are to be uploaded on their servers, and for letting patients and doctors view those images. The charge to view the image when a doctor sends it to a patient or another physician is $1 for iPhones and $2 for iPads.
After nearly 2 and a half years, and an FDA clearance these apps are finally starting to make their way into doctor’s offices across the country. I think with the use of these applications we are making gigantic steps in many different directions. One of the first thoughts that comes to my mind is the thought that all the paper and time put into creating and maintaining these images will be forgotten. Suddenly a doctor can view a scan from years ago without having to have a doctor’s assistant go down to archives and search for a patients document. This is going to be a huge advantage for doctors in the coming future. Doctors will be able to move patients in and out of their facilities a lot faster than before. Decisions will be made, treatments will be given, lives will be saved just from the implementation of applications like these. Although it takes servers and databases to store the massive amounts of data collected by these services, I think we have more to gain than to loose when it comes to medicine. I am excited for the day I visit the doctor and my doctor is actually prepared for my visit, not having to call his secretary to go grab a document from last year, instead he will pull out his tablet and have his answers within seconds instead of minutes or even hours.