Readers weigh in on . . .

Re: Bundle bungle (March 24)

I, as a computer user and IT professional, look upon these decisions to break up the bundles as a good thing. Why buy the full office suite of one company

when it includes software programs that I may not want or ever use? Within my job I would find it better to use single office products that can be utilized to my standards as opposed to changing everything to fit a company like Microsoft’s idea of how the world should function.

I don’t know if you have been to the Dell site lately to check out pricing and bundled packages that they offer. The cost of an office suite or production suite is built into the price of the unit and it is usually a low end product such as Corel or Microsoft Works. If you want the full Microsoft Office Suite you pay extra. If I want a gaming machine with no office suite I don’t have the option online to say no to any of these options. So Companies Like Dell and HP are just as bad as Microsoft in forcing Bundles on everyone. If bundles are broken up it may force these companies to give more options to customers. Choice is a good thing.

Eli Collins
IT & CS Trainer Maintenance Manager
CF Naval Engineering School

Re: Pharmacists prescribe industry portal to reduce errors (March 22)

Thanks for carrying that article. Pharmacists have been, by necessity, technology-friendly for many years and as the IT centre of the medical universe are in an ideal position to provide these services to finally bring medical information processing into the 20th century (no mistake).

The real stumbling block will likely be convincing physicians that keeping patient records in shoeboxes full of loose papers with cryptic notes that they cannot even decipher reliably is actually a form of malpractice.

Then, convincing them that just like other health professionals, they need to learn how to organize their patient records in a meaningful way and to use it that way also.

They will also need to understand that computers, software and training are a cost of doing business and that they cannot drag their feet on implementation while they wait for someone else to develop and pay for these tools.

There is no excuse in this day and age for a doctor to enter an exam room without having a clearly printed set of notes for the patient about to be seen that contains vital statistics, allergy warnings, lists of current medications, summary of known conditions, references to most recent referrals or diagnostic tests and a synopsis of the exam notes from the previous consultation along with any goals or follow-up criteria. Plus a digital picture taken from the patient’s health insurance card.

At least 25 per cent of my day is occupied with contacting physicians to verify changes to med orders that don’t make sense, orders for meds that are known allergy risks or are contraindicated for that patient in some way, Rx’s written for the wrong patient (hence need for photos on patient files) Rx’s written with obvious errors or where basic arithmetic is wrong necessitating another visit to the office to correct, etc., etc., etc.

There will likely never be a paperless office for physicians but there is a happy medium and the E-therapeutics initiative is a good step in that direction.

Mike Marini
Dover Apothecary
Port Dover Ontario

Re: Off the clock (March 18)

Thanks for your editorial. I look forward to the day when we don’t talk about clock speed (horsepower) and start to talk about time to boot up (acceleration?) with all the standard stuff loaded: time to open files (passing time?) and time to shut down (braking distance?). All the stuff in between is generally good but my computer is still getting itself organized for the day long after I have returned with my coffee. Mind you, that idle time is when I catch up on Computing Canada on hard copy — coffee rings and all.

John Alley

Re: B.C. outsourcing plan sparks privacy fears (March 16)

That’s just the tip of the iceberg. How about the outsourcing that is going on to India and China? What about your personal banking information being available to a help desks in India and China? Think about identity theft.

There’s more coming if the government doesn’t hold companies who outsource and grant access to citizen information to other countries.

Constantine Levis

Re: B.C. outsourcing plan sparks privacy fears (March 16)

Maybe I’m a bit slow, but I find it hard to believe that there are no Canadian (non U.S.-owned) companies that can do the service. If a provincial government wants to privatize the job, the least they could do would be to keep the jobs (and money) in Canada, with Canadians. The U.S. government is probably very happy to be getting its hands on all this new information without having to ask for it.

Archie Henderson

Letters to the editor must include the writer’s name and company name along with an e-mail address or other contact information. All letters become the property of Editors reserve the right to edit submissions for length and content.

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