The emergency room may look a bit different in five years. And when I say “different,” I mean that mobile robots will be waiting on you and collecting your blood pressure and pulse rate.
Computer engineers at Vanderbilt University have a new idea about improving a hospital’s emergency department, proposing a system of cognitive robots that gather medical information and provide basic diagnoses to the human staff.
In the new system, the registration clerk is replaced by a kiosk. When patients provide critical information, like chest pain or another emergency condition, the robot alerts the staff so they can provide immediate attention. In less urgent situations, the robot informs the patient of the current wait time and directs him or her to the waiting room (Some things never change.).
Meanwhile “smart” waiting-room chairs, equipped with nurse triage assistant robots, could collect basic data including blood pressure, pulse rate, blood oxygen saturation, respiration rate, height and weight.
The Vanderbilt undergraduate engineering students have begun building a prototype registration robot assistant for their senior design project. Their design includes a touch-screen display, a camera, a blood pressure cuff, an electronic weight scale and a fingertip pulse oximeter that measures pulse rate and blood oxygen levels.
What do you think?