I think we've all been there at one time or another: sitting partially unclothed in a hospital or medical clinic room, waiting for a doctor to see us. There are a variety of reasons for this nearly universal experience. Sometimes it's because the doctors themselves have to wait for test results to come back from the lab, but more often, the delay can be attributed to the incredible inefficiencies that exist within today's medical system.
A few weeks back, I explained how 3M
The tags, though, are just the beginning of a wave of technologies that should help streamline America's health-care system in the years ahead. Yesterday, IBM
Recently, a number of large corporations -- including Intel
The companies are to be applauded for their efforts, and I believe they will yield some impressive results, but I prefer Big Blue's approach. This is because instead of relying on a central database, it seeks to establish a communications network among a number of different medical database systems.
One advantage of such a system is that if an employee leaves a company, the network will be able to deliver their medical records wherever they go, rather than making someone else transfer records to a new database.
IBM's system is only being tested in a small pilot program of seven hospitals and 24 doctors' offices. But if it works, it could not only shorten those uncomfortable waits in the doctor's office -- it could also lengthen IBM's profits by giving the company access to a segment of the economy that is desperately in need of improvement.
The system is just one more reason I think IBM is the best blue chip of 2007. If you disagree, feel free to register your opinion in CAPS, The Motley Fool's stock-ranking and investing intelligence database.
Interested in other IBM-related Foolishness? Check out these articles:
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- IBM Takes Another Small Step