While all of us know that medical technologies have improved a lot during the recent years, is our technology-driven modern lifestyle increasing the need/demand for healthcare facilities, silently?
I seriously fail to understand the role of technology in ‘improving’ our lives. If you look at it outwardly, then yes, technology is definitely simplifying things and enabling people to do more. The time spent on a particular job has been reduced drastically as technology is being infused into each and every segment these days.
But does that mean all iz well?
Technology, like everything else, is a double edged sword. Especially in the hands of greedy human beings. If technology reduces the time taken for a particular job, people just want more such jobs accomplished (with less staff)!!
These days, amazingly, we work almost throughout the day, in spite of so much advancements in technology!! It’s a paradox of sorts – we discover tools to simplify/reduce our work, but our (collective) greed wants more and more, which invariably results in us working more, not less.
Has technology ended up creating more work for us, instead of less work?
Worse, all kinds of technologies that enable remote working (including the Internet) has resulted in us working even from home! Clients/management/associates call us at any point of time and expect us to complete some ‘urgent task’ as they know we are always connected!
If we think that our changing/demanding lifestyles enable us to earn more and hence we can live happily (in whatever little time that is not occupied by work), we are wrong there too. Our cost of living keeps increasing every year and life just becomes more and more expensive! So, 10% increase in our salary for the next year might actually result in us spending 20% more!! Thanks to the technology called credit cards 😐
I feel that our modern lifestyles and modern healthcare facilities are closely inter-related. It is the modern lifestyle that fuels the need for modern (expensive) healthcare. We can afford to consume excessive fast-food/alcohol, etc. today because we know that our healthcare facilities will treat us (in case of ailments) and our insurance will take care of the treatment costs!
Secondly, there is no time. In a nuclear family, typically both partners work and there is not much time for unimportant activities like cooking! Even if we make some time and choose to cook, technology has infused enough chemicals in our food to ensure that even home-cooked food may not be all that healthy. You want organic food? Spend three times more!!
I do admit that when modern technology aids preventive medicinal practices like vaccination or solves complex surgical challenges due to accidents, etc. it is indeed beneficial. But, when technology creates new lifestyles, which results in ailments; and the same technology is used to cure it, what is the point??
Modern day healthcare should take inputs from our traditional lifestyle practices, which emphasized on preventive care, than treatments. While we have organic foods, there is no equivalent organic treatment methods! How about Naturopathy? Why not advance natural healthcare treatment practices, instead of addicting people to drugs/medicines?
But our ‘modern healthcare practitioners’ won’t do all that. Because, such things give less ‘Turnover’ and ‘Revenue’. As long as medicine is treated as business, any improvements in ‘healthcare technologies’ will benefit only a few, and that too the ones who were already affected by faulty lifestyle practices, fueled by modern technologies.
Let us look at the other side – Since doctors and hospital management are earning so much, are they themselves happy? Absolutely not. They too work 24×7 and they are subject to the same ailments that modern lifestyles result in. But they can get treatment in their own hospitals, if that is any respite! To Doctors and Hospital Management: I am writing this article for your benefit, as much as ours!!
PS: This article has been written for the indiblogger contest ‘How does modern healthcare touch lives’. To get the pen-drive (participatory prize), I need to link to Cutting Edge (Apollo hospitals page). Of course, I stand no chance of winning anything else 😛