3 Reasons Medical Schools Must Invest in Technology

August 27, 2014 Kristen Hicks

There will always be excuses and reasons to put off investing in new technology or upgrades for the technology you already have. Most medical school programs share the same financial concerns that plague higher education programs worldwide. When it comes to educating the world’s future doctors though, the stakes are too high to let excuses bear much weight.

Medical students absolutely must get a thorough, effective education. Everyone working in medical education has a meaningful responsibility to the general populace to ensure that the men and women we all turn to for our health concerns know what they’re doing.

Technology has become an important part of that process. To give medical students the knowledge, skills, and experience they need to excel, technology is required. Here are three compelling reasons why can help you overcome any objections you may face in bringing new or better technology into your medical school program.

1) Students need experience with the technology they’ll be using at their jobs. This is true in terms of high-level, complex medical devices, such as MRIs, but it also applies to more common devices that are becoming ubiquitous in hospitals, such as iPads. In 2012, the rate at which doctors used tablets at their jobs doubled.

Many schools have already started to encourage (if not require) more mobile use among medical students. Students who are actively gaining this extra technological experience in school will have an advantage start out far ahead of those that have to those who do not learn it on the job.

2) Advanced technologies for medical training leave students better prepared for working with real-life patients. Being a good doctor is only partially about retaining the knowledge to provide qualified advice, handling people well and making quick decisions are important and distinct skills doctors need to know. Those are a little harder to obtain in a classroom, meaning medical students have traditionally been faced with learning them on the ground with actual patients.

With the help of recent technology, students can use simulations to help gain some of that valuable experience before working with actual patients. While students could practice on actors who are portraying patients, it would likely mean increased costs for their schools. Ultimately, with simulation technology, students can devote more time to learning and improving their performances.

3) Technology increases efficiency. Assessment technology can help students identify their strengths and weaknesses, and regular status updates will help them study more efficiently. In addition, tablets can help students in residency programs to be more productive.

Once all of the relevant factors are considered, it’s easy to see that the benefits of bringing additional technology into your school’s medical program will quickly outweigh the costs.

 

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