Robots have been a lifesaver for businesses such as Syracuse-based Hamilton County Hospital, which in June 2013 lacked a single doctor and was on the brink of closing, Shields writes. Since adding a robot the hospital has seen a 40 percent growth in patients.
The University of Kansas Hospital is also working with facilities to help stroke doctors connect with patients via the robots, Shields writes. KU spokesman Tony Nunn said "doctors will be available around the clock for remote consultations" and will be able to link to the robot using an iPad or computer. Nunn told Shields, “It’s like ‘The Jetsons’ on steroids."
The robots are created by California-based InTouch Health, which states it serves more than 1,000 hospitals worldwide. Twenty Kansas facilities currently use robots, and 10 more expected to begin using them by next month, Shields writes. But the cost is steep—around $50,000 per robot. Hamilton County chief executive Bryan Coffey has been so impressed by his robot that he wrote an article offering suggestions about how small hospitals can find the funds to afford robots. (Read more)