Who says all the good gadgets are in the big cities?
The sick bay in one small California town just got a lot more interesting. Healdsburg District Hospital, in Sonoma County, Calif., recently showed off a new addition to its staff, a remote-presence robot called RP-7.
RP-7 cruises around the hospital's hallways and, with its flat-screen TV for a head and two panning cameras for eyes, allows patients and doctors in one town to consult with other doctors or specialists hundreds of miles away. Sitting at a computer, a doctor can move the robot around a hospital in a remote location, talk with a patient and hospital staff, and can even listen to the patient's heartbeat. (Not to mention scare the wits out of the hospital's nurses by making RP-7 lurk about.)
It's almost enough to make me feign a flu just to go check out the No. 5 lookalike.
But for the hospital-wary, we've posted some pictures of the robot in action here.