Technology is a means, not an end

technology

(Credit: Unsplash)

This article was exclusively written for The European Sting by Ms. Ana Paula Weber and Mr. Lucas Gheller Machado, medical students in their third year of studies at Unicesumar, Brazil. They are affiliated to the International Federation of Medical Students Associations (IFMSA), cordial partner of The Sting. The opinions expressed in this piece belong strictly to the writers and do not necessarily reflect IFMSA’s view on the topic, nor The European Sting’s one.


Over time, humanity has gone through several stages of development, so that each society has a share in the contribution for social environment’s evolution. In the 18th century, for example, the Industrial Revolution took place, a milestone in development that forever changed humanity’s way of life and consequently health conditions in general. Technology advanced more quickly than humans were able to withstand without any damage. This triggered a series of diseases that culminated in the involvement of a wide spectrum of individuals. Thus, it was observed that technology and health should not to progress isolated, but together, in order to obtain mutual benefit to society. Therefore, there is an increasing demand for the development of mobile technologies to save lives nowadays, once there is an increase in population demand and in the cost of acquisition, and in contrast a reduced amount of resources available to serve the entire world in a short time. 1,2

Even before emphasizing the importance of technology to save lives, it is necessary to reassess that there are fundamental precepts for the establishment of that in health. Edward Teller, for example, even though having  the technology to discover the hydrogen bomb, said that ‘‘today’s science is tomorrow’s technology’’, revealing the far too much importance of what preceded technology. Similarly, it is possible to infer that humanity was responsible for discovering technology and not the other way around, and therefore following Socrates deductive syllogism, has the capacity to develop simple technological measures appropriate to current and future health systems. 1,2

In addition, technological innovations in healthcare typically emerge in line with emerging demands. In this sense, examples such as artificial intelligence algorithms for image analysis and electronic medical records were crucial innovations in advancing health, and currently are simple and quick to be performed, helping immensely in health systems. 3 Furthermore there are the wearables and smart watches, devices created to monitor the health of individuals, which can detect possible adversities conditions and monitor comorbidities that offer health risks, facilitating continuous monitoring and increasing patient’s autonomy. However, nanotechnology, biotechnology, 3D printing, bioabsorbable stents, among others, are highly effective and necessary technological solutions for the improvement of the technique in health as a whole. 4 The big problem, however, is making these alternatives simple, low cost and accessible to the point of standardizing in the national territory and perhaps on a global scale.

That said, it is concluded that mobile technology is a potential ally to health systems in order to save lives. However, there is a notable problem in health systems: the difficulties in making simple what was originally simple, although shielded from bureaucracy. By eliminating the complexity of the determinants, the simplicity of technology becomes explicit. Besides that it appears that there is a lack of incentive, support and mass implementation processes, that is, the validation is simple and many times, it has already been done, leaving to optimize the execution and reach to the healthcare systems. 5

References

  1. Steinhubl SR, Muse ED, Topol EJ. The emerging field of mobile health. Sci Transl Med. 2015;7(283):283rv3. doi:10.1126/scitranslmed.aaa3487.
  2. Bhavnani SP, Narula J, Sengupta PP. Mobile technology and the digitization of healthcare. Eur Heart J. 2016;37(18):1428-1438. doi:10.1093/eurheartj/ehv770.
  3. Zhu W, Shen Y, Zhen H, Yang X, Hu K. Study of the Application of Mobile Medical Technology in Construction of Grading Diagnosis and Treatment System. Zhongguo Yi Liao Qi Xie Za Zhi. 2018;42(2):95-98. doi:10.3969/j.issn.1671-7104.2018.02.005.
  4. Cox SM, Lane A, Volchenboum SL. Use of Wearable, Mobile, and Sensor Technology in Cancer Clinical Trials. JCO Clin Cancer Inform. 2018;2:1-11. doi:10.1200/CCI.17.00147.
  5. Mather C, Jensen S, Cummings E. Clinical Simulation: A Protocol for Evaluation of Mobile Technology. Stud Health Technol Inform. 2017;241:179-184.

About the authors

Ana Paula Weber is 20 years old and is studying the 3rd year of Medicine in Brazil, at Unicesumar (Maringá-PR). She is currently vice president of the Academic League of Intensive Care Medicine of Maringá (LAMIM), treasurer of the Miguel Nicolelis Academic Center (CAMN), member of the Academic League of Clinical Medicine of Maringá (LACMMA) and member of the Academic League of Plastic Surgery of Unicesumar (LACPU). In addition, she has part of Humanizart, a project of clowns aimed at social actions of empathy and joy to patients. She seeks to build her trajectory with academic activities and extracurricular activities.

Lucas Gheller Machado is 19 years old and he courses the third year of medicine. Currently, he is local coordinator of IFMSA Brasil UniCesumar, president of the Miguel Nicolelis Academic Center (CAMN), president of the Academic League of Intensive Medicine in Maringá (LAMIM) and member of the Academic League of Medical Genetics (LAGeM). In addition, he constantly participates in Humanizart social actions, aimed at serving vulnerable populations and collaborating with humanization in the streets and hospitals. His objective is to combine graduation with scientific and artistic development, constituting a formation of solid and essential pillars.

the sting Milestones

Featured Stings

Can we feed everyone without unleashing disaster? Read on

These campaigners want to give a quarter of the UK back to nature

How to build a more resilient and inclusive global system

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

Some Prevailing Arguments and Perceptions over the South China Sea Issue Are Simply Wrong

WHO chief underscores need to address climate change following visit to Bahamas

“What a Wonderful World”: the unsettled relationship between Climate Change and Human Health

The UK referendum has already damaged Europe: even a ‘remain’ result is not without cost to Britain and the EU

Here are 5 reasons why the ocean is so important

Bosnia and Herzegovina: EU allocates additional €3.5 million to support vulnerable refugees and migrants

Miguel Arias Cañete European Commission

EU should invest more in climate and not sit back on its laurels and watch

We should look to nature for solutions to the global water crisis. Here’s why

Measuring consumer confidence isn’t useful anymore. Here’s what we should do instead

India: Climate emergency message resonates at world’s largest literature festival – UN News special report from Jaipur

UN team aids Samoa response to deadly measles epidemic

Sign language protects ‘linguistic identity and cultural diversity’ of all users, says UN chief

EU Summit/Migration: Parliament calls for joint solutions based on solidarity

This robot boat delivered a box of oysters in a breakthrough for unmanned shipping

How teaching ‘future resilient’ skills can help workers adapt to automation

These are the next big products in consumer technology

A new proposal breaks the stalemate over the Banking Union

Women in leadership: eliminating the gender gap in medicine

Why Commissioner Rehn wants us all to work more for less

The European Sting @ Mobile World Congress 2014, Creating What’s Next for the World. Can EU Policy follow?

Apparently the EU Digital Single Market passes necessarily from China’s Digital Silk Road

MEPs back first EU management plan for fish stocks in the Western Mediterranean

5 ways you can protect insects if you live in a city

What would it take to make AI ‘greener’?

Why protectionism spells trouble for global economic growth

What is a CSO and does every company need one?

What if Trump wins the November election and Renzi loses the December referendum?

5 ways for businesses to walk the talk on gender equality

10 lessons from the COVID-19 frontline for a more gender-equal world

3 priorities to shape the post-pandemic financial system

Making Europe’s businesses future-ready: A new Industrial Strategy for a globally competitive, green and digital Europe

GSMA Reveals Virtual Event Details Welcoming a New Era of Connected Impact at MWC Barcelona

Here’s how to achieve an optimal student/tutor ratio

A Sting Exclusive: “Technology for all, development for all: the role of ITU”, written by the Secretary General of the United Nations Agency

A new catastrophic phase in the Syrian carnage

A Sting Exclusive: “Regional Policy: a fully-fledged investment policy”, Commissioner Cretu reveals live from European Business Summit 2015

5 facts you might not know about why forest biodiversity matters

Where America’s refugees came from in 2018

UN chief condemns deadly attacks in Pakistan

Biblioburro: The amazing donkey libraries of Colombia

EU-wide penalties for money laundering: deal with Council

Main results of Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) – 18-19/10/2018

Mediterranean migrant drownings should spur greater action by European countries, urge UN agencies

Do you dare to go to China?

Inequality triggered protests across Latin America. Here’s how the youth can help

‘Think beyond farm jobs’ to reach sustainable development, UN agriculture chief advises African youth

New EU rules ensure better protection for 120 million holidaymakers this summer

New European Bauhaus: new actions and funding to link sustainability to style and inclusion

European Court rules that ECB’s OMT program of 2012 is OK; not a word from Germany about returning the Greek 2010 courtesy

European tourism remains a strong growth factor

Mergers: Commission fines Canon €28 million for partially implementing its acquisition of Toshiba Medical Systems Corporation before notification and merger control approval

10 of Albert Einstein’s best quotes

Commission welcomes the adoption of €373 billion Cohesion policy legislative package 2021-2027

Mental health and suicide prevention: the contradictory access in a reference city of southern Brazil

€200 million to promote European agri-food products in and outside the EU

Energy Union: deals on efficiency targets and governance

6 ways travelling professionals can cut their carbon footprint

Help prevent children ‘from becoming victims in the first place’, implores Guterres at campaign launch

Google once more under EU crossfire from a possible record fine and new Right to be forgotten case

Abu Dhabi is investing $250 million in tech start-ups

More Stings?

Trackbacks

  1. […] READ MORE FROM SOURCE ARTICLE […]

  2. […] Read More: Technology is a means, not an end […]

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: