Seemingly on a daily basis, news media outlets are reporting on more and more robotic medical technology entering hospital surgical suites, in-patient rooms, in-home patient care, and for use with emergency services and vehicles.
Increasingly, this new unfolding healthcare scenario is looked upon both as a wellspring of new robotic care and healing innovations and also as a near bewildering array of complex medical devices needing careful integration into the healthcare system.
The MIT Enterprise Forum took up the quest to examine this new era in medical care, to provide a few answers to some of the biggest questions and to forecast a way forward during its Innovation Series Event: Robotics in Healthcare: Solutions for the Hospital. MIT Stata Center, 32 Vassar Street, Cambridge, MA.
Dan Kara, Robotics Business Review?s analyst-at-large was invited to sit on the MIT Panel and to share his experience and expertise in robotics. Joining him in the session were Colin Angle, CEO and Chairman, iRobot; Steve Kelly, Chairman, President and COO of Myomo (My Own Motion); David Handler, President and CEO, Corindus Vascular Robotics; and Dr. Holly Yanco, Professor and Associate Chair of Computer Science at the University of Massachusetts Lowell.
?Robotics,? as the Innovation Series suggests, ?hold the promise of addressing major healthcare issues in surgery, diagnostics, prosthetics, physical and mental therapy, monitoring, and support. Where are advances being made to personalize care and improve the quality, access and efficiency of healthcare through robotics??
Notable for Kara was the synergy between the issues addressed at the MIT panel and his own upcoming research report for Robotics Business Review, Quality of Life: Healthcare Robotics, which he said at a recent meeting, will address the entire gamut of healthcare issues and robotics applications both in the US and abroad. ?Without doubt,? he emphasized, ?healthcare robotics is the most pressing and most pervasive arena for robotics applications. And healthcare robotics has a truly worldwide opportunity to impact the entire healthcare delivery system from hospital to home.?
During the panel session, Kara and his mates discussed important areas where robotics are “entering the healthcare delivery chain as new products, services, or systems. They discussed how robots are providing solutions to medical and societal needs and put forth practical applications that are used in the hospital, eldercare and rehabilitative care as well as home environments.” Areas upon which their discussions touched included:
- Motor skills rehabilitation
- Mental and cognitive therapy
- Patient monitoring
- Ingested capsules/endoscopy
An article by Alison Diana in InformationWeek?s Healthcare segment, covered similar ground as the panel, highlighting specific robotic devices already in use and spearheading the early advance of this multi-billion dollar trend in robotic innovation: 12 Advances In Medical Robotics
More on who?s building what and what applications are crucial to healthcare robotics can be found in Robotics Business Review?s Healthcare News section.
Kara?s upcoming research report (June 2012) will join a corpus of 10 existing research reports currently available free of charge to members of Robotics Business Review (See: Research Reports).
During 2012, Dan Kara will produce one, in-depth, deep-dive research report per quarter. Following June?s ?Quality of Life: Healthcare Robotics,? the scheduled research reports center on Warehouse Automation; Agriculture; Heavy Industry; and Mining.
Joining Kara in the research and development of each upcoming report is Daryl Delano, chief economist for EH Publishing (parent of Robotics Business Review). Delano, with over two decades of experience in developing economic forecasts, statistical surveys and financial projections, adds a savvy insider?s look at the macro- to micro-economic impact and marketplace dynamics of healthcare robotics.
A partial table of contents to Quality of Life: Healthcare Robotics:
Defining the Healthcare Robotics Marketplace
- Overall Market Sizing
- General Challenges/Opportunities
- Overall Investment/Funding Trends
- Taxonomic Framework for Discussion (Applications of Robotics in the Healthcare Market)
- Robotics Technology That Support Doctors and Surgeons
- Robotics Technology to Support Patients (from medical center to home)
- Robotic Technologies For Temporary Use
- Robotic Technologies For Continual Use
- Robotic Technology That Supports Infrastructure
- Miscellaneous Classes of Healthcare Robotics Systems
- Market Drivers
- Political and Social Drivers
- Epidemiological Drivers
- Other Disease
- Aging/Growing Population
- Handicapped and Disabled
- Quality of Life Expectations
- Governmental Support
- Business Drivers
- Cost Control
- Labor Shortage
- Enhanced Capabilities
- New Capabilities
- Healthcare ?Gets? Robotics
- Social Acceptance
- Legal Issues and Regulation
- Technology Drivers
- Review of Healthcare Robotics Sectors
- Supplier Descriptions (A-Z and by class)