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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Jeffrey S. Rose, MD (Private Practice)
Description: This is a concise, general review of the history, uses, and potential for information technology (IT) across a broad spectrum of health professions.
Purpose: The purpose is to introduce concepts, terms, and examples of relevance to health informatics to educate and thereby relieve the fears that are associated with clinical computing when individuals are first approaching the IT world. The authors accomplish their objective.
Audience: This book is intended for IT novices in the health fields ranging from dentistry to clinical practice to medical imaging. The authors have written an engaging and easy to read introductory text, with a lot of peripheral information of interest regarding information management tools. The only omissions have to do with the complexities of actually using IT in practice.
Features: The authors first introduce basic concepts of hardware, software, and networks. They then briefly review issues around security, privacy, and confidentiality of information, and then introduce the uses of IT in a variety of healthcare settings. As an introductory text this book is understandably lacking depth in many areas, but the authors certainly provide a base and timely references for those who want to travel further into the world of health informatics. What the book lacks in depth is made up in appeal; this is engaging, well illustrated, and easy to read material.
Assessment: There is a plethora of introductory books on IT in healthcare, but in this one the authors balance the basics with direct healthcare applications in a way that gives readers a good basis for progressing.