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Opinion: Teach medical students to use diagnostic tools with their patients

In their quests to become practicing physicians, medical students perform amazing feats of memorization to gain a rich understanding of the language and process of medicine. Despite their best efforts, misdiagnoses are still the top concern in the ECRI Institute’s 2018 report on health care quality and safety. In this age of ubiquitous digital information, why are medical decision errors commonplace? Poor training in using digital evidence to augment decision-making may be a key culprit.

The problem isn’t our capability to create technological tools to augment clinical decision-making. A number of these exist and are being used by physicians around the country. The problem is that these tools aren’t a routine part of the medical school curriculum, and medical students aren’t taught how to integrate them into clinical practice.

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