Physician inventors should do research to ensure they aren't 'reinventing the wheel'

Do your providers have an idea that can revolutionize medicine? Well, it is important they investigate what is currently on the market or in the development pipeline. A thorough analysis of competing technologies is essential to successful market adoption, a step that should follow the ideation phase but precede the building of a prototype or pilot-ready version.

The reasoning behind my suggestion is, "You could remake the wheel, but would it be a valuable use of your time?"

It's surprising how common it is for a physician inventor to stumble on a concept that has already been realized by someone else. Many times, a competing technology is better, or further along, rendering the inventor's approach obsolete. Or, the inventor is proposing additional features that only provide incremental benefit. In that case, it may make sense to form a collaboration with the company or institution practicing the competing approach and request additional features, rather than building a new prototype from scratch.

I can see why people in Thomas Edison's time would potentially make the mistake of inventing something in parallel with someone else. When great distances between communities were traversed only by way of of horse and carriages and newspapers were the snails' pace means of spreading the word, it is not surprising that inventors would be unaware of competing efforts.

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