HAS TECHNOLOGY DELIVERED ON ITS PROMISE OF HUMAN BETTERMENT?
DR. KRISTEN DOMIKE
20 NOVEMBER 2012
The purpose of this research was to understand and answer the question “Has Technology Delivered On Its Promise Of Human Betterment?”. To do so, we searched for the effects of medical technology on humans, using articles from the textbook and internet, the summary of lectures undergone over the semester and personal experience. Using ideas from the article “The Blow Back Of Duality”, I agreed that as medical technology became progressively fruitful, we encounter even more harmful diseases, although I disagreed with the author that this is basis for refuting the total effect of technology on health. From the article “The Post Modern: A Transparent Society”, the author says that the mass media has caused more confusion, however the media has also made it possible for the public to be aware of medical services. Innovations such as robotics and improved communication systems in medical technology have lessened the work load of professionals, allowed patients to be more involved in their health due to portable devices like diabetic regulation lenses and information, and increased longevity. Through showing various benefits of medical technology like to human betterment, it was concluded that technology has indeed delivered on its promise of human betterment.
Technology is moving at a whirlwind pace, growing exponentially, almost alarmingly, and as we get over our awe of the breakthroughs in technology, we begin to see the disadvantages, like the constantly improving weapon of mass destruction. In our alarm, we have taken a step back and posed the question to ourselves “Has Technology Delivered On Its Promise Of Human Betterment?”. The fact that we need to ask this question means that we are doubting the continued significance of technology to our daily lives. To answer this question, we must first understand what technology is. There are many definitions we can use, but for the purpose of this paper, I will define technology as the modification of the natural environment in order to satisfy perceived human need and wants via the use of tools and the application of science. There are many applications of technology and the fact that it is so broad a topic forces us to chose one system where technology has been applied to answer this question clearly. From my point of view, the health sector is a perfect example.
Medical technology is designed to improve the detection, diagnosis, treatment and monitoring of disease and illness and has been around since the cave man began using rocks as tools to perform trephening, a process where a hole is made in the body cavity in order to remove particles or release pressure, such as in the skull. Health care is the diagnosis, prevention and treatment of physical and mental impairments in humans. In the 1990’s, the annual mortality rate was one in forty two Americans, and the life expectancy was fifty years. Today, the average person has a life expectancy of seventy seven years with an annual mortality rate of one in a hundred and twenty five people (National Bureau of Economic Research). Because of advances in the quality of health care, a quality made possible because of medical technology, we can live longer and healthier. Being crippled no longer limits the variety of activities that you can indulge in. In terms of the health care industry, Technology has delivered on its promise of human betterment, because the health care industry is driven by advances in technology, such as the synthesis of drugs like penicillin which was the first drug that was effective against many serious diseases such as syphilis, improvement in machinery like the Magnetic Resonance Imaging which allows us to view internal structures of the body in detail and health care has improved human life and longevity.
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