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We need to talk about Healthcare...


We are several thousand doctors and nurses short of safe practice and those we train are leaving for better working conditions and better weather.

The HSE (Ireland's public health body) try, but the reaction is always the same - pour money at the service and prop up every local small hospital with expensive locums. Nobody ever looks at the actual workload to ask the obvious question… How much of this work can be automated?

Every day I work in an Emergency Department the patient journey is the same. I call them in from the waiting room. I look for a tiny unused corner of space to examine them and I ask the same questions for the same clinical condition in order to order the same tests. 

The vast majority of patients fit neatly into algorithms for chest pain, abdominal pain, headache or whatever brought them to the ED. Simple symptom checker apps can manage to bring these symptoms through algorithms where the patient guides their own journey. Why can we not do the same so that the patient has got the first half of their ED clinical interaction done, by theme, in the waiting room?

As for the Sun and the climate, well there’s very little we can do about that.