If you’re old enough to remember the Jetsons, you’re old enough to have daydreamed about having your own personal jetpack to fly you to school and a robot maid named Rosie, who would happily keep your room tidy for you.
While those jetpacks and personable maids still seem like distant fantasies, it’s quite possible we will be seeing robots in the very near future. And in healthcare of all places!
Many industries have big concerns over machines replacing people in the workforce. But what providers in healthcare are starting to realize is, robots won’t replace humans, but rather, free us up to do the more important, human tasks.
Here are some interesting examples we’re seeing of robotics in healthcare.
Surgery is always a scary situation for everyone involved because things can always go wrong when you cut into a patient. But now surgeons are getting some help with technology like daVinci.
This machine is already being used in a wide variety of fields from head and neck to urologic surgery. While surgeons are operating the system and in complete control the entire time, the machine offers greater flexibility, more precision, and with smaller incisions.
Allowing a Human Touch
If you or a loved one has spent any time in the hospital, you may have noticed that patients interact the most with nurses. These healthcare professionals are responsible, it seems, for almost everything. Drawing blood, taking vitals, checking on a patient’s condition and taking care of hygiene needs. Because of this they are often overwhelmed and physically and mentally exhausted. This leads to many nurses who become burnt out and quickly.
But in the not-too-distant future, robotic nurses will be able to unload some of the heavy burden of nursing by performing the repetitive tasks, giving more time and energy to the human staff, who can then offer that human touch and empathy that patients greatly need.
According to Centers for Disease Control, 1 in every 25 patients will contract a Hospital Acquired Infection (HAI). Of those, 1 in 9 will die. Not only is the human loss far too great, there is also a financial loss as well. Typically, these infections cost more than $30 billion each year.
Xenex, a Texas-based company, produces a unique robot that uses ultraviolet light to disinfect any space in a healthcare facility quickly and efficiently, thereby significantly reducing the number of HAI each year.
These are just some of the ways robotics will be assisting healthcare now and in the future.
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