Medical Advancements & Healthcare System

by Keysa Garcia

Overview

Picture [11].

Different technological advancements are being brought to countries with an increasingly high number of individuals who can’t get the correct treatments due to the lack of advancement in their countries healthcare systems.

Top Tier

When looking at the world and it is entirety, our society tends to label countries. For example, Chinese people are labeled as people who eat dogs or that all Mexican foods are spicy. However, when one thinks of Spain they think of lazy people who take 3 hour siestas in the middle of the day. What people don’t know about Spain is that it is amongst the top five researching and developing countries within the medical technology world [1].

Not only is Spain amongst the top five countries, but it flourishes in other medical aspects besides research and development. For example, agrobiotechnology, the application of biotechnology on to agriculture is ranked third in the world. Another example includes, Spain being the fifth largest exporter of health technology and Spain ranking third in reproductive technology.

Reproductive Technology

As previously mentioned, Spain is very advanced in reproduction technology. One of the largest and most well-known fertility centers, Instituto Valenciano de Infertilidad (IVI). The Instituto Valenciano de Infertilidad is one of the first fertility groups to open up in Europe and all over the world. The institution was founded in 1990, and 65 clinics in 11 different countries; with 35 of the clinics in Spain and 19 in the United States [8].

What most Americans dream of is having a family, and sometimes this isn’t possible. As many American females wish to conceive naturally, many have to turn into in vitro fertilization. In result to this many American fertilization companies rely on any advancements or new techniques that Spain produces. An example of this includes embryo transfers. Medical professionals in the United States transfer embryos by playing a small catheter and releasing the embryo [9]. However, researchers and developers at the IVI have noted higher success rates if this process is down with a guided ultrasound [10]. Findings like these, have lead to merging of Spanish fertilization companies with American Fertilization companies [3].

The embryo transfer process [9].

Pulmonology

When reflecting on the aspects within the Americas influenced by Spain, one can look into the what is taught to students at the high school, collegiate, and graduate level. Michael Servetus (villanueva de Sigena, Aragón, Spain, 29 September 1509 or 1511 – 27 October 1553) was one the first Europeans to describe the functions of the pulmonary circulation [4]. Michael Servetus explains the functions of pulmonary circulation by describing the color of the blood, and the size and location of different ventricles. The functions Michael talks about are all common teachings a student learns in an American classroom setting.

Approximately 35% of deaths that occur in United States are respiratory related, and 75% (a total of 26%) of that is caused by Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) [6]. However, when you compare COPD death rates the 26% of deaths in the United States towers over the 6.9% of deaths in Spain [7].

Spanish-Arabic Medicine

At the starting point of the 7th century till the end of 8th century, an Arabian culture started too spread from the Straits of Gibraltar to Egypt, and leading to the Spain. As the culture migrated through the country, so did the writings of many medical professionals. Many of these writings, were works done by Rhazes.

Muhammad ibn Zakariya al-Razi, Rhazes, was a Persian polymath, physician, alchemist, philosopher. Besides all of these attributes Rhazes is an important figure in the history of medicine [13]. Rhazes was a personal physician while living in Baghdad but his literary works on the differences between measles and smallpox’s traveled through Europe and made its way to medical schools in Cordova, Sevilla, and Toledo. [12]

In addition to Muhammad ibn Zakariya al-Razi, a.k.a Rhazes… We are introduced to an Arabic doctor, who practiced medicine in Cordoba. Abul Kasim, migrated to Spain and was the first to be interested dentistry. Abul is also the first too manifest an illustrated literary piece about surgery, within this text he illustrates about many topics including removal of teeth and plaque [14]. These two concepts are top reasons why individuals in today’s society go to the dentist.

Surgery

The Iberian Peninsula was visited by many foreigners who all shared one common trait, that trait was a vast knowledge within the medical and surgical field. The surgical aspects one gets to learn about today or gets to see on Tv stemmed from the megalithic era. WIthin the megalithic era, the first “surgical” procedure was performed, the procedure is what we know as trepanation, the procedure of making a hole in an individual’s skull. Until the Renaissance, Spain did not flourish within the medical and surgical field. As time went by, improvements and advancements were made. However, most advancements were noted by medical breakthroughs, such as anesthesia, and many technological breakthroughs in the 19th century. [15]

However, since the 19th century Spain has not stopped. Spain is currently envied by many countries by their surgical transplant rates. It is noted in the video description, that 27 organs are donated by every million people! This is currently (2015, when the video was posted), twice as much as the Americas. [16] However, I believe that in North America this rate is not as high as Spain’s due to the eating habits and lifestyle Americans, most organs are not eligible for transplants.

Transplant Surgery in Spain envied by others. [16]

Healthcare System

When looking more in depth about the Healthcare System of Spain, various sources mentioned how Spain started implementing electronic health records (EMR) during the past decade. However, as a current healthcare assistant and healthcare system trainer at the University of Miami, I am always reminded that our system is “faulty” because it’s only 3 years old. My provider states that for every patient within our system there should be four sets of eyes, as he also mentions on he misses writing a patient’s prescription on a tiny piece of paper.

Nonetheless, Spain has introduced their electronic health records (EMR) within two decades. According to MIT technology review, by the year 2010 more than 95% of Primary Care Physicians were using the EMR and also placing more than 250 million prescriptions. [5]

Videos

Antonia Goggans testimonial about dealing with the Spanish healthcare and comparing it to the United States [2].

Source

[1] Article Post – Medical Research and Development in Spain

[2] Youtube Video – Antonia Goggans Testimonial

[3] Article Post – Merging of Spanish and American Fertilization companies

[4] Article Post – History on Michael Servetus

[5] Article Post – Emergency Medical Records Statistics

[6] Research Article – COPD Background and Statistics

[7] Article Post – COPD Spain Death Rates

[8] Webpage – IVI Locations and Facts

[9] Youtube Video – Visual representation of Embryo Transfer

[10] Article Post – Ultrasound increases Embryo Transfer success rate

[11] Picture – Clipart

[12] Article Post – A History of Surgery

[13] Webpage Info – Wikipedia

[14] Webpage – History of Medicine

[15] Article Post – History of Surgery

[16] Youtube Video – Transplant Surgery in Spain

Leave a Reply