Definition of cyberMedicine
20/20: View to year 2020
cyberMedicine is the discipline of applying the Internet to medicine. The field
encompasses the use of global networking technologies to educate, innovate, and
communicate in ways that promote medical practice, commerce, scholarship, and empowerment.
An offspring of the information revolution, cyberMedicine is rapidly transforming
medicine into a virtual marriage of fields as disparate as the medical sciences, business
and commerce, electronics, psychology, philosophy and health economics. As we progress
deep into the 21st Century, comprehension of the impact of this new discipline on the near
future and demands an integrative mind, an asset rare in today's culture of
cyberMedicine is creeping into the medicine of today, but it will swiftly become the
medicine of the very near future, evolving from contemporary traditional and alternative
medicine. Nearing its potential, it will then mutate into a wholly different and global
discipline, which is powerful, efficient, and consumer friendly, incorporating individual
and cultural wisdom of world experts. And as it revolutionizes the structure of medicine,
cyberMedicine will ultimately offer untold benefits to every facet of medical care even in
global locales where healthcare is woefully deficient. cyberMedicine is not a sub-set of
something else -- it is the embodiment of 21st century medicine.
Individuals and institutions are stuck in thought-ruts, pursuing one, two or a few
narrow pathways into the future. Review of the literature substantiates the lack of an
integrative perspective. Rewards and advantage will go to one who sketches the whole from
seemingly unconnected parts. That sketch will come from the cyberMedicine artists.
Sheila Moriber Katz, MD, MBA, and Kim Solez, MD