The question of how to maintain quality healthcare standards while forging ahead into new discoveries and developments is baffling to many clinicians. Optometry’s success in the coming years will depend on the ability of ODs to overcome challenges like economic competitiveness and utilize and grow alongside technological advances that are changing the way business is conducted, like artificial intelligence. Diving into the approximately 5,500 publications of peer reviewed materials exchanged on the National Library of Medicine every day is a great place to start if ODs can come up with the energy and time expenditures to do so. AI is here to help.
Optometry’s success in the coming years will depend on the ability of optometrists to overcome challenges like economic competitiveness and utilize and grow alongside technological advances that are changing the way business is conducted.
There are now 20 million medical publications, freely accessible as abstracts and full publications within the National Library of Medicine (NLM). Some two million publications are added each year for clinicians to reference in examination rooms, at home, or anywhere they’d like on smart devices. NLM sends more than 10 terabytes of data to nearly five million users and receives more than 100 terabytes of data, representing approximately 5,500 publications of exchanged, peer reviewed, reading material every day.1
There is incredible research waiting to be discovered and applied within this data, and few ODs rolling their sleeves up to unearth it.
The reasons why? Stressful modern practice demands, educational debt, and competing family priorities lead to physician burnout.
Practice demands, physician burnout
In 1975, an average physician visit was 60 minutes long, and a follow-up visit was 30. Today, an average office visit is 12 minutes long, and return visits are seven.1
Modern healthcare specifically demands the treatment of increasingly diverse and aging populations, which creates the “perfect storm” for physician burnout, especially when it comes to primary-care doctors and their associated teams of practitioners.
The question of how to maintain quality healthcare standards while forging ahead into new discoveries and developments is baffling.
1. Topol E. Deep Medicine. 1st Edition. Hatchett Books, New York, NY. 2019.
2. Lipton BH. The Biology of Belief, Unleashing the Power of Consciousness, Matter and Miracles. 10th Edition. Hay House, Inc. Carlsbad, CA. 2016.
3. Lustig, R. Video: Sugar the Bitter Truth, https://youtu.be/ dBnniua6-oM. Accessed 1/29/20.
4. Lustig, R. Sugar the Bitter Truth. Plume, Penguin Group. New York, NY. 2014.
5. Richer S. Is there a prevention and treatment strategy for age related macular degeneration? J Am Optom Assoc. 1993;64(12):838-50.
6. Centers for Disease Control. National Diabetes Statistics Report, 2017. Available at: https://www.cdc.gov/diabetes/ pdfs/data/statistics/national-diabetes-statistics-report.pdf. Accessed 1/29/30.
7. Richer S, Gelb K, Jaffe R. Windows into Wellness: Eight Biomarkers You Should Know. Rev Optom. 2018 Sept 15, 2018, pages 30-33..
8. Knobbe C. Ancestral Dietary Strategy to Prevent and Treat Macular Degeneration. 1st edition. Cure AMD Foundation. Boulder, CO. 2016.
9. Richer S, Poteet J, Ruskin D, Summerton S, Hitchmoth D. Wellness Essentials for Clinical Practice, 2nd Edition. Suppl Rev Optom. 15 October 2018.
10. Richer S, Poteet J, Ruskin D, Summerton S, Hitchmoth D. Wellness Essentials for Clinical Practice. 3nd Edition. Suppl Rev Optom. 15 October 2019.
11. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Occupational Outlook Handbook: Optometrists. Available at: https://www.bls.gov/ ooh/healthcare/optometrists.htm. Accessed 1/29/20.
12. Chester W, Engfehr K, Gelb, K. Open your Eyes. https:// www.imdb.com/title/tt11487298/?ref_=nm_knf_i2. Accessed 1/29/20.