A Doc's Life is a underground Medical Blog about some poor Singapore doctors. They are sibei sian and very buay song. Best practices not observed!
(Warning: Grammar is non existent in this blog. Those obsessively compulsive about good English please go no further and book an appointment to see your psychiatrist in Singapore.)

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Binary Confusion Part II

"If there is a part I, there will always be a part II"

One night an old man brought his even older mother for admission. I asked him,

Og: Uncle you got her previous medical records or not.
Grumpy Old Man: Yes.
Og: Can I have a look.
Grumpy Old Man: All at home.
Og: Hmmmm.... ok.... maybe you bring tomorrow. It will really help us.
Grumpy Old Man: Isn't it all in the computer???
Og: Er... this is her first admission here, it will help if I have her records from the other hospital.
Grumpy Old Man: Isn't it all connected liao? Read in the papers. Can't you just retrieve it from the computers?

NO! It is not all in the computers!

Dr Og really misses the good old days when we used to WRITE discharge summaries and prescriptions ON PAPER. Don't get me wrong, I embrace technology. Otherwise this site will not exist. But in the good old days we didn't have to endure down time, paper jams and computer records that are suppose to exist but somehow do not.

Lets face it, the first expenditure to be cut in hospitals will be the IT funding in times of economic down turn and Monkey Republic cannot sell enuff bananas. Which is the reason why til this day we are still not using optical mouse. Hell, Dr Og even have to spent some good time servicing the ball of the mouse (when I can be carrying balls somewhere else).

There will be a Part III!


  1. I love og11:52 AM

    actually I long for the day to come where we can do "online" consultation leh ..

    Just msn w doc ..tell him symptons, problems etc ..

    Online diagnosis

    No waiting time.

    Medicine deliver to door step with clearly written priscriptions etc .

    Just a thought.. May be unrealistic.

  2. future aussie med student11:55 AM

    hmm but i think the doc needs to examine the patient also wat...cant base on what the patient verbally complains alone ma...

  3. Dr Oz bloke12:13 PM

    Actually you are not unrealistic.

    It has already been done. I've been trying to work up my own online consult service.

  4. relac, dr Og, technolgy will only get better (worse), thankfully less papers and thus more trees? actually not so either...geez.

  5. dear akk, today weather quite cool, so i quite relac. hehe.

  6. xiaoming1:28 PM

    I love og > u forgot online MC.. maybe the loctor can email us the mc.. idea hor!

    loctor > optical mouse quite cheap ma.. can buy n plug in urself, hate the balls also.

    Put a "optical mouse fund" button on the site bar la, sure alot of pple donate

  7. wah lau, xiaoming, we small lokun got no office and perm comp. I get mouse then sure get raped by everyone.
    may consider starting donations, but must be for charitable cause lah!

    dr bl og is sibei altruistic one!

  8. When I was told by the polyclinics that I have to bring the ORIGINAL referral letter (on paper) to see the specialist at the hospital, I was thinking too, "Don't you have it all in the computer? Aren't they linked up??"

  9. ah jo, tat would be like a wish come true for doctors. one click and the patient's past history and referral appears on the screen.

  10. I love og3:44 PM

    It's a matter of investments on IT infrastructure...

    Need $$$$$$$


  11. oooh... another idea for dissertation...

  12. xiaoming5:17 PM

    actually all link up not good leh.

    Like dat next time wanna clinic hop also hard.

  13. xiaoming, you chow keng ar?

  14. Anonymous6:53 PM

    aren't they working towards sharing of medical records?..

  15. aust med student bf7:23 PM

    sian i m shag

  16. australian med student7:44 PM

    I'm very tired too. very shacked. yeah, i thought that medical records were shared between hospitals, at least government hospitals. no meh?

  17. aust med student bf7:45 PM

    dear wanna shag?

  18. Anonymous7:46 PM

    is it a sign of burning out? i am feeling tired speaking and explaining to relatives of patients that time is needed to trace old notes and what is on the computer is only a brief summary?!

  19. but of course all this only happen in monkey republic, state general

  20. pretzel8:21 PM

    From patient's perspective, i'm also getting very tired having to explain the entire medical history everytime a new Dr attend to me... *Sighz*

    really looking forward for the day that you folks can have similar sophisticated system like the mayo clinic kind... :)

  21. Anonymous8:48 PM

    i think it is not only the technology problem. have to consider security issue. even hospital within the same cluster cannot share all data lah. esp for VVIP.

  22. Anonymous10:31 PM

    alamak as for security ....just give talk (boundaries and consequences, give "subtle" hint of repercussion..made every1 sign form ..do audit..make some monkey an example..

  23. At the end of the day, a better IT system would mean more cost. That would lead to higher healthcare costs. That would translate to higher bills.

  24. Anonymous11:37 AM

    dr blog: you should try to find the EMR button. at least it'll help somewhat.

    But don't worry too much, the new emr system linking the CLUSTERS will be implemented in a few months. More data would be available.

  25. I love og12:03 PM

    BUt investing in IT in hospital is v v impt. Yes there will be cost involve, but , must see if cost outweights the benefits. And whther it could lead to greater savings somewhere else..so not necessary healthcare cost will increase rite?

    Besides, i have never seen a hospital made money in any part of the world. NOT sure abt SG in banana republic ;P

  26. pretzel12:09 PM

    Dr BL Og: ideally, better IT systems means more efficiency, and by right should save costs in the looonnng run.

    Anon @ 11:37am: heard one of the clusters, the server can happy happy switch-off... i happen to witness my fren's hp getting sms notification that server down every 10 mins or so, during one of our dinners... and he was bitcing about the consultant's service quality (lack of)