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Entries in medicine (17)

Wednesday
Apr182007

Health Care in 1994 (1973)

Chapter two of the 1973 book 1994: The World of Tomorrow outlines health care predictions for the future:

From time to time, headlines announce the startling new developments in the field of medicine such as: freezing people after death so that they can be revived one hundred years later; and creating "mechanical" men full of artificial replacements. Since few serious prognosticators believe that any of these "medical wonders" will actually occur in the near future, let's take a look at what we can realistically expect to see in 1994:

- The practice of medicine directed toward the prevention, rather than the treatment, of infectious diseases.
- Health insurance for every American.
- Vaccinations to immunize children against rheumatic fever.
- The control, perhaps the prevention, of hypertension by new drugs and chemicals.
- Intensive coronary care units in all hospitals for the treatment of acutely ill patients. (The American Heart Association estimates that such facilities could save some 50,000 heart patients who now die each year.)
- Detection and removal of blood clots before they produce damage from heart attack or stroke.
- Vaccines to prevent the venereal diseases of gonorrhea and syphilis.
- A vaccine to prevent tooth decay.
- Routine lung and liver transplants.
- More sophisticated drug treatment for epilepsy.
- "Medical cities," resembling sprawling shopping centers, consisting of high-rise hospital buildings surrounded by parking areas and garages.
- Most doctors employed full time at medical center complexes, and more physicians trained as specialists.
- Development of drugs for the successful treatment of some cancers.

The prediction of universal health insurance for Americans is obviously the most politically contentious issue on the list. I wonder what kind of support the idea had in 1973 compared with today.

See also:
1994: The World of Tomorrow (1973)

Monday
Apr162007

Connections: AT&T's Vision of the Future (Part 5, 1993)

Continuing our series of clips from the 1993 video Connections: AT&T's Vision of the Future, today we have part 5. Practicing medicine over picturephone, personal computer assistants and a glimpse of the classroom of the future are just a few of the paleo-futuristic wonders featured in this clip and clips to come.


See also:

Connections: AT&T's Vision of the Future (Part 1, 1993)
Connections: AT&T's Vision of the Future (Part 2, 1993)
Connections: AT&T's Vision of the Future (Part 3, 1993)
Connections: AT&T's Vision of the Future (Part 4, 1993)
The Road Ahead: Future Classroom (1995)

Thursday
Apr122007

Hubert H. Humphrey's Future (1967)

For the February, 1967 issue of The Futurist magazine, Hubert H. Humphrey, wrote a piece articulating his vision of the future. The Vice President broke up his thoughts into two categories; Developments of the Next 20 Years, and Far-Out Developments by A.D. 2000.

Here are some of the developments we can look forward to within the next 20 years:

In agriculture, the large-scale use of de-salinated sea water.
In medicine, the transplantation of natural organs and the use of artificial ones.
In psychiatry, the widespread application of drugs that control or modify the personality.
In education, the use of more sophisticated teaching machines.
In wordwide communication, the everyday employment of translating machines.
In industry, the extensive use of automation, up to and including some kinds of decision-making at the management level.
In space, the establishment of a permanent base upon the moon.
Some of you might say that there is nothing very surprising here. And you would be right.
Experience shows that it takes 10 to 30 years for a new idea to make its way from its inception in a scientist's mind to its general application in everyday life. Therefore, the world of 20 years from now already exists, in embryo, in today's advanced research establishments.

A theme in 1960's America that seems to pop up repeatedly is faith in a permanent moon base. Tomorrow we'll look at Hubert H. Humphrey's predicitions for the year 2000.

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