Journal Article

A “Fundamental Theorem” of Biomedical Informatics

Charles P. Friedman

in Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association

Published on behalf of American Medical Informatics Association

Volume 16, issue 2, pages 169-170
Published in print March 2009 | ISSN: 1067-5027
Published online March 2009 | e-ISSN: 1527-974X | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1197/jamia.M3092
A “Fundamental Theorem” of Biomedical Informatics

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  • Medical Statistics and Methodology
  • Bioinformatics and Computational Biology
  • Biomathematics and Statistics

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Abstract

This paper proposes, in words and pictures, a “fundamental theorem” to help clarify what informatics is and what it is not. In words, the theorem stipulates that a person working in partnership with an information resource is “better” than that same person unassisted. The theorem is applicable to health care, research, education, and administrative activities. Three corollaries to the theorem illustrate that informatics is more about people than technology; that in order for the theorem to hold, resources must be informative in addition to being correct; and that the theorem can fail to hold for reasons explained by understanding the interaction between the person and the resource.

Journal Article.  1079 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Medical Statistics and Methodology ; Bioinformatics and Computational Biology ; Biomathematics and Statistics

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