Hospital workers are caught up in the Pokemon Go craze and it’s begun to raise concerns. Between rooming patients it seems there’s just enough time to snag a Vaporeon. Some health care facilities have shut it down amidst concerns that selfies and snapshots risk the transmission of PHI.
While Pokemon Go raises new challenges around privacy, the greater challenge centers on medical mindfulness for providers.
One consequence of the information explosion is rising inputs. Ambient screens on our wrists and in our hands feed us information, breaking news, game scores and Pokemon apparitions. We face a kind of medical digiphrenia, to borrow from Douglas Rushkoff.
But doubling down on Pokemon Go doesn’t fix the problem.
Rather this run on our attention should serve as a starting point for discussing how we manage inputs and media while working with patients. Because after Pokemon Go there’ll be something else. We don’t have an addictive game problem but an issue with where we choose to put our attention.
Sherry Turkle in Alone Together suggests that technologies, in every generation, present opportunities to reflect on our values and direction.
This is one opportunity to start a conversation.