Robots in medicine are revolutionising the sector by simplifying tasks like delivering and sterilising medical supplies and performing delicate surgical procedures. Intel provides various technologies for creating medical robots, such as those that provide aid during surgery, are modular, or are fully autonomous mobility robots.
Robots are increasingly being used in various clinical settings, not just the operating room, to assist healthcare professionals and improve patient outcomes. During the current COVID-19 epidemic, hospitals and clinics are using robots for a significantly wider variety of jobs to decrease patient exposure to infectious diseases.
Medical robotics has broad use due to its ability to streamline processes and reduce risks. In infectious illness wards, robots can clean and prepare patient rooms without human assistance. Medical facilities may save time and effort by using robots equipped with artificial intelligence (AI)-enabled medicine identification software to speed up locating and dispensing the correct medication to each patient.
Robotics and automation are also widely utilised in labs. They facilitate the automation of manual, repetitive, and high-volume operations, freeing up technicians and scientists to concentrate on more strategic endeavours that hasten the pace at which discoveries are made.
Positive Effects of Robotics on Healthcare
By incorporating robots into healthcare, we can improve the quality of care provided to patients, streamline clinical workflows, and ensure the safety of both patients and medical staff.
Superior Medical Attention to Each Patient
Robots in the medical field allow for less invasive surgeries, individualised and regular monitoring of patients with chronic illnesses, intelligent therapies, and social engagement for the elderly. Because robots lighten the strain, nurses and other caregivers may spend more time with each patient, improving their long-term health and happiness.
Eliminating Redundancies in Clinical Procedures
In addition to streamlining regular operations, reducing the physical demands on human employees, and guaranteeing more consistent procedures, autonomous mobile robots (AMRs) also provide several other advantages. By monitoring stock and arranging immediate orders, these robots may help mitigate the effects of personnel shortages and ensure that essential items like medications and tools are always available. Hygiene and sanitation Thanks to AMRs, hospital rooms can be promptly cleaned and prepared for new patients, freeing up staff time to concentrate on providing high-quality care for patients.
Intact and Secure Workplace
AMRs are used to move linens and supplies in hospitals where the potential of pathogen contamination is high. Hundreds of hospitals and clinics have begun employing robots to clean and disinfect their facilities since they have been shown to lower the spread of bacteria and other pathogens and hence the number of HAIs. Another way AMR, specifically social robots, benefits healthcare personnel is by easing their workloads by assisting with heavy liftings, such as transferring patients’ beds.
Robots that help surgeons out in the operating room
Increases in the accuracy of surgical robots have paralleled developments in motion control technology. These robots, equipped with artificial intelligence and computer vision, allow surgeons to conduct difficult procedures at record speeds. Surgeons may be able to monitor treatments from a control room if surgical robots are capable of fully autonomous operation.
There are two primary types of robotic surgery:
- Invasive procedures for the abdomen and chest are called minimally invasive. These operations predominantly target soft tissues, such as robotic hysterectomy, robotic prostatectomy, bariatric surgery, and others. These robots are designed to be inserted via a tiny incision and then lock themselves into position, providing a solid platform from which remote surgical procedures may be carried out. In the past, most interior surgeries required huge incisions, or “open surgery.” The likelihood of infection and other problems increased, and the time needed to recover was lengthened significantly. Even for a skilled surgeon, it is challenging to do manual work via an incision the size of a button. Surgical robots have made these treatments more streamlined and precise, hoping to decrease the prevalence of infections and other problems.
- Orthopaedic procedures: Using spatially defined limits to guide the surgeon, these robots combine intelligent robotic arms, 3D imaging, and data analytics to achieve more predictable outcomes. Robots may be taught in specialised orthopaedic surgery thanks to AI modelling, which provides detailed treatment instructions.
Surgeons may get insight from talks with other professionals in their area thanks to the ability to send a video stream from the operating room to other places, whether nearby or far away. Patients may be certain that only the most skilled surgeons will work on their cases.
Artificial intelligence is being used more and more in surgical robots. Using computer vision, surgical robots can identify various kinds of tissue within their range of view. For instance, modern surgical robots may aid doctors in avoiding sensitive tissue, such as nerves and muscles. Using high-definition, 3D computer vision, surgeons may get valuable insight and improve their efficiency during surgeries.
When it comes to teaching future surgeons, robotics is crucial. Artificial intelligence and simulated environments are used in simulation platforms to teach surgical robots. Within the simulated setting, surgeons may train using robotics controls to perfect their craft.
Robots with a modular design are more adaptable than traditional machines and may be programmed to carry out various tasks. These include therapeutic exoskeleton robots and robotic prosthetic arms and legs used in medical treatment.
Rehabilitation after neurologic injuries, including strokes, spinal cord injuries, TBIs, and MS-related disabilities, may all benefit from therapeutic robots. Intel and Accenture are working on a robotic arm that can be attached to a wheelchair to aid people with spinal cord injuries to carry out their everyday activities. Robots using artificial intelligence and depth cameras can measure a patient’s range of motion in various situations and keep better track of their improvement than a person can. Patients may benefit from interacting with them since they can get guidance and support.
Health robots will continue to improve in parallel with advances in machine learning, data analytics, computer vision, and other technologies. Robots of all stripes will keep becoming smarter and better at doing their jobs independently.