The other day I was talking to a futurist who specializes in tele-robotic medicine. Perhaps you know a little bit about this or have read some articles in this realm. They do become popular pieces in the science news, healthcare news, or in online media. We've all heard about the robots that do surgery by remote control with the doctor who is halfway around the world running the controls similar to a drone operator in the United States flying a UAV around Afghanistan. In one case you are saving people, and in the other, well, you aren't.
It's amazing how far these technologies have come, and how fast they are moving in the present. Personally, I've been impressed with the Da Vinci tele-robotic surgery technologies. If you've ever watched the videos of these machines working is quite stunning the amount of accuracy and precision they can attain. What are the success rates? Well because only the best doctors right now are allowed to use them the success rates are fairly high. And if there is a mistake, it is either due to the operator, the doctor, or those who had set up the patient on the table prior to the beginning of the procedure.
Complications can occur as they do with any type of surgery, after all the patients are there because there's a physical problem with their bodies, nevertheless since the success rates are decent, and the machines and technology are getting better, along with the protocols used by healthcare professionals, it's obvious we will continue to see more and more of this in the future.
Eventually after enough procedures and surgeries these machines will have artificial intelligence and learn from the mistakes and successes of each subsequent operation. This means they will get smarter, more proficient, and the success rates will climb dramatically. In other words, one day you may go into the hospital and a robot does the surgery with perfection. Perhaps after you're done you will go up and kissed the robot. Of course the technician will go and clean off your slobber and sanitize the robotic arm afterwards.
Interestingly enough there is more to this story of tele-robotic medicine than you might have considered. Indeed, our Think Tank has put a lot of thought into the future or "In-Home Care" with tele-robotic helpers, with operators perhaps in India and how that solution might assist with the challenges of our huge demographic shift and age distribution, not just here but around the 1st World, Japan, EU, US, etc.
It's a huge opportunity in biotech, and I'm glad to see the United States is on the leading edge, or rather the bleeding-edge of this future, as it is happening now. Please consider all this and think on it in 2015.
Please comment and let us know your thoughts on the topic!