Most of my patients when I introduce them to my new friend hanging on the wall of the examination room, initially think it is just a new portion of the old exam room, just another fixture.
When I turn on the TV and plug my Chromebook to the HDMI cord a strange thing happens, an interest, a surprise, a curiosity, flashes across the patient’s eyes. not unlike the first rays of sun sparkling the grass in the morning.
Then I get up off my duff, and we look at the graphed vitals from the end of 2011, and I show them their BMI when they were diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes. With exercise, dieting, and without any fancy pills, the graph trends downward, and I give them an “attaboy” as they are no longer obese but approaching normalcy.
I enlarge the text in Past Medical history, and explain, that with the aging process and accumulation of patients, I have to keep detailed information so I can remember the specifics, and we go through line by line. I ask, does this ring true, is that fine the way I worded that, do you see anything not quite right, and we work together to modify update and correct.
They open their bag of herbals and prescription medications, and with the Medication list I have up on the TV, we go through one by one till they match up. Yes, it takes time, but well spent. I have refreshed my memory from reviewing the Past Medical history, I analyze if all of these medications are necessary, and can any be trimmed off.
The Health Maintenance bars of red and yellow pop up, and I remind my patient, these are only guidelines or recommendations, but here is the literature on the Tdap, and it has been over 10 years and you have grand kids around and the whooping cough component is included with this, and with both verbal and visual clues the educational process really takes.
But with this approach a coming together of the electronic record, data entry, education, but most importantly a soothing comforting transfer of understanding occurs.
If this sounds reasonable and your electronic record is easily understandable when projected on a large TV, I am asking physicians to consider this approach in one exam room. A 10 dollar VGA or HDMI cord plugged into your TV brought from home placed on a counter top at the office could be used for a trial run. I think the mirroring capability is easy to manage on most any device used at the point of contact in the exam room. Just try this and I bet and hope you will have a similar effect.