Informatics and the Practice of Medicine

Last May, I gave a presentation on how physicians can make better use of smartphones at the annual convention of the Philippine College of Physicians. This was one of the introductory slides I used.  The points of the star enumerate the new competencies for health professionals as written in the Institute of Medicine document entitled “Health Professions Education: A Bridge to Quality (2003).” This document opines that to deliver ideal care in the 21st century,

“All health professionals should be educated to deliver patient-centered care as members of an interdisciplinary team, emphasizing evidence-based practice, quality improvement approaches, and informatics.”

What is informatics, in particular what is health informatics?

Health informatics is the study and application of methods to improve the management of patient data, medical knowledge, population data and other information relevant to patient care and community health.

Wyatt JC & Liu JLY. J Epidemiol Community Health 2002;56:808-12

I truly believe that informatics will be increasingly important in the practice of medicine. I’m trying to finish my thesis for an MS in Health Informatics: Design and Implementation of a Prototype Web-based Self-Instructional Module. If (!) and when I complete it :) I hope to make a small contribution to educating physicians of the future!

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