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September 13, 1965

Role of a Digital Computer in a Diagnostic Center

Author Affiliations

From the Instrumentation Field Station, Heart Disease Control Program, Division of Chronic Diseases, Department of Health, Education and Welfare, and George Washington University Hospital, Washington, DC (Drs. Cooper and Caceres); Alexandria (Va) Health Department (Dr. McGough); and Northwest Central Clinic, District of Columbia Health Department, and Washington Hospital Center, Washington, DC (Dr. Ostrow).

JAMA. 1965;193(11):911-915. doi:10.1001/jama.1965.03090110049013

The digital computer is now used in diagnostic centers for the analysis of medical signals. In one location, a health-department clinic, routine electrocardiograms and spirograms are sent daily by telephone to the central computer facility. The computer analysis is returned by teletype to the clinic. In another setting, the computer is used to interpret ECGs obtained in a mass screening project. A third use of the computer involves obtaining ECGs in the patient's home, with transmission individually by telephone. In each situation, the computer allows delegation of a routine task from man to machine.