The Computer Distraction-A Question for My Patients

22 Feb

This is a post that is really more than a question for patients than anything else…

It was inspired by a NYTimes article about physician’s being distracted by their computers and smart phones…You can find this article here.

Does my laptop annoy you?

Do you see it as a distraction or a necessary part of the practice of medicine?

One of the things that we stressed over when we went to electronic medical records was how the presence of the computer in the room with us would affect our ability to connect with our patients.

I take my computer everywhere and work while I am talking to my patients but I try to be skillful about continuing to pay close attention to make eye contact more than looking at the computer screen.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on this…

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10 Responses to “The Computer Distraction-A Question for My Patients”

  1. Amy Brazell February 22, 2013 at 2:28 am #

    The laptop is not distracting to me. I feel it is just a normal part of a doctor’s practice these days and is necessary. I haven’t ever felt like we weren’t getting the interaction and personal attention that any patient would desire from a doctor.

  2. Christi Beerley February 22, 2013 at 2:53 am #

    Ok, I’ll try this again-I thought I commented but ended up sharing this on my wall instead…some of us aren’t as gifted with the technology as you. 🙂
    Not distracting to me at all. I think you do a great job of being personal while using the laptop as a tool. We always feel like you listen, care and are never rushing us. Keep up the good work!

  3. Ryan George February 22, 2013 at 3:10 am #

    I do not mind the technology at all. As a medical professional I feel that the use of technology greatly enhances a practitioners ability to care for a patient. If having a computer means more accurate documentation and greater ease in, say, sending prescriptions then I believe it is beneficial to practitioners and patients both through more complete and thorough care. Plus, you are an outstanding doc that has great rapport with your kiddos, so I have absolutely no problem at all with it.

  4. Hayley Webb February 22, 2013 at 3:51 am #

    I have never gotten the impression that you were more focused on your laptop than us. You asking this question is yet another way you show you care about your patients!

  5. Lauren Hilliard February 22, 2013 at 4:18 am #

    I think its great. It gives you, the doctor, a way to enter the information as you get it. Also, it is a good distraction for my 10-month old, so he isn’t concentrating on the fact that he may be getting checked over by the doctor or having to sit in one place for longer than 2 seconds.

  6. Mauri Westbrook February 22, 2013 at 6:56 pm #

    I think it’s great. You use it as a tool and I appreciate how you are able to instantly see anything relevant in her medical history— Plus I like to see the growth chart. 😉

  7. Desirae March 2, 2013 at 9:01 pm #

    I like the integration of technology. I like seeing my pediatrician take notes and record what I say and know that at the click of a button accurate and detailed information regarding my sons condition can be accessed. I think as long as it is used in replacement of the old pen and pad and used in the same way there can be only benefits. As long as the doctor maintains interest, eye contact and decent amounts of two way conversation, most parents will view the integration as a good thing. As with most inanimate objects, the impact will be positive or negative based largely on the people using them and not the objects themselves.

  8. A Haaland December 5, 2013 at 3:21 pm #

    When you were our doctor I did not find it a distraction at all because you were still so personable and helpful. You did not let the computer ‘take over’ the work and service that you provided us.
    I can see how it would be more difficult for some other doctors/staff as they do not provide their patients with the same level of care that you do.

    • jrsmith120880 December 5, 2013 at 3:24 pm #

      Thanks so much! I would hope that would be the case and was the original reason I wrote the post. Hope all is well with you guys.

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