AMAZING NEWS from India where the Congress-led government says it has reduced the number of new HIV-infections from 520,000 two years ago to 28,000 this year.  Assuming they’re counting properly, that’s good.

COULD this service offered by a Dallas Company be the future of coverage for the uninsured? The  details: $18 membership fee, $4.95 a month, $35 per call. Somehow, we’re skeptical. USA Today had the story in yesterday’s issue.

WIRED NEWS has the scoop on health IT, explaining: "Computers are no cure for dumb docs." For some reason there’s no mention of dumb computers in the story. Or dumb vendors. Or dumb gadget-obsessed journalists, for that matter.

"research published Wednesday suggests that even the best computer systems can’t stop hospitals from being killing machines."

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3 replies »

  1. While computers can’t make up for “dumb docs”, I have the further concern that automated diagnosis “dumbs down” docs. If doctors are deskilled to the point where they lose their ability to diagnose, then what’s the point in investing huge amounts of money in medical school? Medicine will be a boring, routinized profession. And personally, I’d want my physician to have a spark of informed creativity: the sort that would catch a unique combination of symptoms that a computer would probably miss.
    This doesn’t mean I think physicians should be a superclass, holding the rest of society hostage for exhorbitant fees. I think the answer lies with keeping med school rewarding and the med profession satisfying while finding a way to regulate the provision of a necessary service.

  2. Ron,
    It’s not insurance. Its a stop gap-measure.
    The real question is malpractice.
    What happens when the callers start suing?

  3. If the uninsured purchase this so-called teleDoc service they will still be uninsured. If the doctors can’t figure out what is wrong over the phone does the person still owe $35?
    I’m sure they are not licensed to sell insurance because that would cost a lot of bucks for all the states.

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