RP-7i Remote Presence Robot

As a physical therapist, being required to be physically present for your career can be both a burden and a relief. I can breathe a little easier (for now) knowing that my job probably won’t be outsourced any time soon, as it requires physical touch and presence. I also look forward to the day, however, when I am feeling under the weather, or when life’s circumstances keep me from going into work that I can still, at least partially, do my job from home.

Interestingly enough, there are now telepresence robots which allow doctors to advise patients by telecommuting. While this may be in the further future for PT’s,  There are 5 different models listed on the InTouch Health website.

These products are described as remote presence devices, they allow clinicians to interact with patients in real time. In life threatening situations, these can be vital in saving time so that a physician in a hospital can consult patients or support staff to guide treatment without wasting wait time. In less immediate situations, they can just add convenience to healthcare without patients losing work time with travel. Many people simply let medical conditions fester to the point of immediate concern because of the time and effort it takes to get to a medical appointment, and we could potentially save so much in healthcare costs by allowing people the gift of time and convenience to address medical concerns before they require increased tests and procedures.

I hope that as a PT I can soon provide consults to patients requiring less manual treatment and more instruction and guidance without the inconvenience and costs required to physically attend a medical appointment.

photo above: http://www.intouchhealth.com/images/rp-7i-big.png

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