While many people think of robotics as something used by manufacturing, food and space industries, there are many other places that are starting to use new robot technology in ways that you may not expect.
According to an article in Science Daily, Loyola University Health System has started to use new robot technology in hospitals to fight infectious diseases. With this new robotic technology for hospitals, healthcare workers are able to disinfect their facility at “futuristic” levels.
“Little Joe,” a three foot tall, upright, cylinder robot actually works with the housekeeping staff at the hospital to keep rooms clean and infectious-disease free. The robot emits ultraviolet rays for 15 minutes to disinfect and kill germs. These rooms are closed and unoccupied so that humans are not exposed to the UV rays.
The article stated that the pulsed UV light destroys viruses, bacteria and bacterial spores without human contact or use of chemicals. This new robot disease-fighting technology not only keeps patients and workers safe from infections like MRSA and C.Diff, but also saves the hospital and patients money.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, hospital infections can be linked to close to 100,000 deaths each year, and add almost $30 billion in medical costs. These costs could be deflected by new robotic technology for hospitals, like “Little Joe”, that can sweep unoccupied rooms after use and disinfect them to pristine and safe levels.
RobotWorx, a certified integrator for robotic companies like FANUC, Motoman and KUKA, doesn’t deal directly with these kind of disinfecting robots. However, our company does deal with several kinds of new robot technology that is used every day in other areas of the healthcare industry – from building heart-monitoring machines and other electronics to assembling medical carts and hospital beds.