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When I was going through medical school, I often used a handheld device (at that time a personal digital assistant) in the clinical setting to hold references (eg drug references, disease references, procedures). It was much easier than carrying around a bag of reference books and quicker than looking through the book indexes. These handheld devices were and still are able to find drug interactions. Its a much more efficient and safer way to practice. Now, in clinical practice, I just use a laptop to reference the same information as I am much more stationary and not running around from shift to shift.
I do agree with some of the comments below that information is not wisdom. I do also think that when one is learning information to problem solve, and its immediately accessible, disparate quantums can be pulled together to come to a new insight. This occurs over and over in the clinical setting, especially during medical school or residency. A patient may present with a keynote symptoms and the physician can then look that up that particular symptom and find the disease or diseases that have that symptom.
On the other hand, I did have a supervising doctor on a clinical rounds tell me to put down my handheld device and even my pen and paper and focus more on observing the patient, "look, listen, and smell." I still remember that lessen, and at every medical encounter, I spend time just observing.
posted 2 years, 4 months ago
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