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Robot Visits Patients When Doctor Can't


Not exactly, but some doctors have found a way to use a videoconferencing robot to check on patients while they're miles from the hospital.

One is at Baltimore's Sinai Hospital. Outfitted with cameras, a screen and microphone, the joystick-controlled robot is guided into the rooms of Dr. Alex Gandsas' patients where he speaks to them as if he were right there.

"The system allows you to be anywhere in the hospital from anywhere in the world," said the surgeon, who specializes in weight-loss surgery.

Besides his normal morning and afternoon in-person rounds, Gandsas uses the $150,000 robot to visit patients at night or when problems arise. The robot can circle the bed and adjust the position of its two cameras, giving "the perception from the patient's standpoint that the doctor is there," the surgeon said.

"They love it. They'd rather see me through the robot," he said of his patients' reaction to the machine.

| Tags: Public Health and Safety, Weight Loss |

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