In 2014 HCM enhanced its Stroke Center with the installation of the first remote presence robot to aid in the diagnosis of stroke in Texas. Because of this new technology, all patients exhibiting the signs of stroke or experiencing a stroke can be treated close to home.
This virtual, “remote presence” robot, installed in the emergency room, allows a physician to remotely assess a patient for neurological distress, specifically signs of a stroke. A video monitor on the self-navigating robot allows a neurologist offsite to view and interact with a patient. The robot can also be taken to the ICU to aid in more complex stroke cases.
Through the robot, physicians can talk to a patient, examine the patient’s body and listen to the patient’s heartbeat by using a special stethoscope wired into the robot. High-definition video technology allows a physician to closely examine a patient with the same level of specificity as one-on-one contact. The robot navigates itself from the nurses’ station to the exam rooms by using an onboard, rotating camera and sensors mounted on its base.