|AI and Robots are making a huge difference in the current Corona Virus crisis|
it corona is not the first epidemic the modern times have seen, and it’s not
going to be the last. Fueled by the need
to support the elderly population Singapore has already deployed technology in
aiding healthcare professionals in hospitals. These ‘smart hospitals’
incorporate machine learning algorithms in managing patient visits to robots
helping patients in various ways.
example, they can help with direction, delivery of medicine and are tested to
perform complex tasks such as changing linens or lifting heavy equipment. The
robots are also linked to the fire alarm system to ensure the safety of the
patients and can navigate through obstacles on their path. In Hubei province,
the epicenter of the epidemic, a Chinese tech company Cheetah Mobile Inc is
offering automated services, in the hope of reducing the burden on front-line
the cross-infection in outbreaks.
consultation is already in use which can reduce the spread. However, in growing
panic over outbreak patients rush to hospitals making it difficult for medical
workers. The sheer number of patients
coming in through the ER would make it difficult to provide medical care to
everyone in time. It can often result in medical workers working longer periods
and exhaustion. During the outbreak, the actions that need to be taken for medical
care, such as taking temperate and asking a set of questions for diagnosis can
be a repetitive and draining experience for the medical workers. More importantly, working with a large group of infected
patients also increases the chance of cross-infection among medical
workers. If the medical workers turn to
patients, it will only increase the burden on other medical workers to fill
With the current advancement in robotics, we can overcome this situation by placing
robots in the ER rooms. The robots can ask the questions for diagnosis, take
temperature, prioritize the cases based
on machine learning algorithms, and can isolate high-risk patients immediately.
Robots can then be used to dispense medicines to these patients. Robots can be used to sterilize the room with
human intervention. More so robots can be sterilized easily before meeting the
next patient. Thus, minimizing the
interaction of medical workers and improving the efficiency of medical care
during an outbreak. Robots don’t get tired, and they can work perform the same
outbreak cities get locked down making it difficult to send supplies and
medicines to the affected areas. Self-driving vehicles are being used in Wuhan
to deliver medicines. Chinese e-commerce company JD.com has been using
autonomous vehicles to move packages to hospitals.
Drones aka the flying robots are also being used effectively in the affected areas. Preprogrammed
drones are used to sprinkle disinfectants, take thermal imaging for diagnosis in
addition to patrolling the public spaces.
AI in alerting and monitoring
If you are
wondering whether AI is used to monitor the outbreak situation, you are right.
Metabiota and BlueDot were used to track the initial outbreak of the novel coronavirus. BlueDot's solutions track, contextualize, and anticipate infectious
disease risks. BlueDot alerted the Corona virus threat even before WHO
and CDC issued public warnings for the disease. It did that by monitoring
online content and processing huge amounts of data using NLP.
While all these
high technologies can aid us during the outbreak, we also need to be vigilant and responsible
during the outbreak. Please follow CDC’s
instructions for keeping yourself and your family members healthy,
such as washing your hands and avoiding travels.
Srivatsan Aravamudan - Sri
Senior Solution Consultant