SCIENTIFIC PROGRESS THAT GOES UNRECOGNIZED AS SCIENCE (COMMENT). I posted here on an article by Gina Kolata in the New York Times about how hospitals have reduced the amount of time to treat people having heart attacks. She gave the example of Yale-New Haven Hospital where the median time for patients to have their arteries opened, has been reduced from 150 minutes to a median time of 57 minutes. I said in the post that this had been achieved without a scientific breakthrough. My nephew Andrew Schaefer commented that: “Why is this not a scientific breakthrough? Weren’t the Gilbreaths scientists?”
I actually agree with Andrew. And I am usually sensitive to characterizations of science and invention as consisting only of lightning strokes. I posted here on some of the scientific work—yes “breakthroughs”— which the Wright brothers accomplished without the work being recognized generally as science. Yet I think Gina Kolata was expressing a common point of view in her article when she said that the reduction of time to treatment was done “With no new medical discoveries, no new technologies…”
Gina Kolata also says in her article that the dramatic reduction of time to treatment has been done with “little public notice”. Her article is first rate science journalism because it does take notice of important scientific progress.