To minimise physical visits of medical staff in the special ward for Covid-19 patients at Patan-Dharpur medical college of North Guajrat, the hospital authorities have deployed a special robot developed by four youths from the district.
The robot, in the shape of a trolley, delivers medicines, water, food to the patients while also play music or motivational speeches to keep them entertained.
“We have developed a special ward for Covid-19 patients in the hospital. Apart from doctors, nursing and paramedical staff are required to visit the ward. To reduce visits of our staff in the ward, we are using this robot at the hospital,” said Dr Yogesh Goswami, medical superintendent of the hospital.
“Some youths from my locality, who passed out of Industrial Training Institute (ITI), approached me with a concept of developing this robot to reduce the chances of infection in medical staff deployed on Covid-19 duty. Money was a constraint, but they assured me that the cost will remain within thousands, so I gave them green light. They developed this robot at the cost of around Rs 80,000,” Goswami said.
A camera, which can move 360 degrees, has also been fitted in the robot so, apart from delivering medicine, water and food in the ward, a person can interact with patients through a mobile application without entering the ward. It is also fitted with sprinklers so, it can also sanitise any part of the ward.
Anil Patel (36), one of the four youths who developed the robot, said, “First we discussed with a couple of doctors about the issues faced by the medical professionals while treating Covid-19 patients. After that we decided to develop this robot so that the visits of medical staff in the special ward can be minimised.”
“During their every visit to the ward, the medical staff need to wear a fresh PPE kit. And changing the kit and wearing a new one, sometimes increases chances of infection. So, this robot can minimise the physical visit and in a way can also save public money on PPE kits,” Patel added.
A special feature in the robot also enables the medical superintendent to supervise the ward anytime from anywhere.
As the robot has been designed and employed at the Patan-Dharpur hospital, it has been named ‘Dhar-Bot’ by the developers. The hospital authorities have given training to the nursing and other staff to operate the robot.
Mahesh Saini, a male nurse in charge of the Covid-19 ward at the hospital, said, “The robot has a brilliant utility. It gives us minimum exposure to the Covid-19 patients. Whenever necessary, the doctors and nursing staff are visiting the ward in person. But, this robot has reduced the physical visit to the ward for tasks like delivery of food, medicine, water. It is also providing entertainment to the patients. And we can also interact with the patients from a safe distance.”
“Earlier, we had to physically visit the ward four to five times during our shift. With the robot here, now once or twice are enough,” Saini added.
According to Goswami, at present six Covid-19 patients are admitted at the hospital.
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