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July 22, 1988

Answering the Call of `High Tech Medicine': Wedding Engineering to Healing Art, Science

JAMA. 1988;260(4):450-455. doi:10.1001/jama.1988.03410040016003

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THE MEDICAL STUDENT with an urge to tinker with technology as well as heal patients has, with a few exceptions, been limited to one rather arduous option: getting two separate degrees, one in medicine, the other in engineering, and then fashioning an individual career. But as the practice of medicine has become increasingly intertwined with technology, so too has the need for programs that more smoothly wed engineering acumen to clinical skills.

Harkening to that call is the Biomedical Technology Research Center, jointly sponsored by Emory University School of Medicine and the Georgia Institute of Technology, both located in the Atlanta area. Launched this spring, the center is one of at least three such programs that in one way or another seek to blend the best of the two disciplines. In the words of Richard Krause, MD, dean of Emory's medical school, "we need biological engineers [who are] the equivalent