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The Digital Doctor: Hope, Hype, and Harm at the Dawn of Medicine’s Computer Age by Robert Wachter

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Chapter 3The iPatient

Some patients … recover their health simply through their contentment with the goodness of the physician.

—Hippocrates, Precepts

You’ve probably played that parlor game in which you fantasize about what it would be like to have a drink with one of the great figures in history. Perhaps you’d choose Shakespeare, or Churchill, or Einstein. They all sound great to me. But as a doctor and a student of health policy, I would sooner choose Ignaz Semmelweis, the nineteenth-century Hungarian physician whose pioneering work on antisepsis led him to be committed to an asylum for heresy; Sir William Osler, who articulated many of the key principles of medical diagnosis and treatment; or Avedis Donabedian, whose insights transformed ...

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