San Francisco Computer Scientist Develops Online Medical Algorithms Database to Help in Patient Diagnosis
A San Francisco computer scientist has helped to develop an online database of medical algorithms to make the "handy tools" more accessible to physicians, the Los Angeles Times reports. The Medical Algorithms Project, which computer scientist M.G. Sriram developed with Dr. John Svirbely, a pathologist at the McCullough-Hyde Memorial Hospital in Oxford, Ohio, includes more than 3,500 medical calculators, scales and flowcharts to help doctors diagnose and prescribe treatments for patients. Svirbely said that he hopes the Web site will help reduce medical errors. The database, which doctors can access at no cost, includes algorithms to help physicians diagnose a number of conditions, from ankle sprains to acute appendicitis. In addition, the database includes algorithms to help doctors determine drug doses or oxygen consumption for patients (Mestel, Los Angeles Times, 4/8). The Web site divides the algorithms, which Sriram and Svirbely found on the Internet and in medical journals and textbooks, into 44 chapters. Doctors can search the database online, and they can access some of the algorithms on handheld computers (Medical Algorithms Project Web site, 4/8).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.