Coverage & Commentary

Hammers and healthcare: technology’s role in modern medicine

The productivity gap in healthcare is no secret, and future technological development should be geared toward shrinking it. Tools are implements, not solutions. They are insufficient to the task of medical practice on their own, and require a tinkerer, a craftsman, an implementor. Tools in medicine are no different than tools invented for other purposes — utility is often impossible to fully understand at inception.

It’s not until you put it in the user’s hands that applications arise, and full potential is realized much farther down the road. You can have a hammer, nails, and a blueprint. But without a competent executor of those tools, your house has little chance of standing. The true benefit from new technology will come when we understand how to produce and wield the best of these tools for the broader job of delivering care that is advanced, technical, and human at the same time.