Email notification for tests pending at discharge [article] – 90’s technology comes to healthcare

I literally chuckled out loud when I read this abstract from the most recent issue of the Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association (JAMIA). Yes, chuckled. It wasn’t a full laugh because it was just so pathetic. I struggled trying to decide what blog category to place this article in. It’s not really mobile, but then again I suppose you can read your email from any smartphone. No, that would be giving the article more credit than it deserves. I suppose it could be lumped in with Technology. No, this is 2012. How about Therapeutics. No, not really. Huh, I’m stumped. None of the above it is.

The article discusses the use of email to notify physicians about patient test results that are pending at discharge. It’s pretty common to have test results that aren’t back yet when it’s time for a patient to leave the hospital. No big deal unless the test comes back with results that would require the patient to stay longer or need quicker follow-up.

The article was received for publication in September of 2011. That alone was enough to raise my eyebrow. September of 1991 maybe, but 2011? C’mon, man! An article about email notification submitted in 2011. Wow, just wow. Someone’s really thinking outside the box. Next thing you know they’ll figure out how to use a pager. Carrier pigeon?

( 10.1136/amiajnl-2011-000615)


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