04 Aug Book Review: The Edge of Medicine: The Technology That Will Change Our Lives
By William Hanson
Palgrave Macmillan, 2008
256 pp.; $24.95
One night, William Hanson was sitting at a computer workstation monitoring more than a hundred patients scattered around Philadelphia. He was the ”doc in the box” in a new telemedicine service designed to provide closer supervision of critically ill patients in lightly staffed hospitals late at night.
Peering into his monitor, Hanson noticed that something was very wrong with a particular patient in a surgical intensive-care unit. Too much blood was coming from her drainage tubes. Hanson alerted the on-call physician, who found serious internal bleeding that required immediate surgery.
”We are in the midst of an evolutionary explosion in medical technology,” writes Hanson in The Edge of Medicine: The Technology That Will Change Our Lives. He is well qualified on both fronts: a professor of anesthesiology at the University of Pennsylvania—the same university where I teach but in a different school and department—and also an affiliated faculty member of the computer science department at Princeton University. He knows of what he speaks.
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