Category Archives: hardware

WP: VA Experience May Herald New Uses for ‘Droids’

The Washington Post has a story about the use of hospital robots at the Veterans Administration: ‘…TOBOR, the robot, is a delivery “droid” that glides along the corridors day and night, ferrying medicines from the hospital’s central pharmacy to its wards. Bigger and boxier than R2D2, the rolling robot in the “Star Wars” movies, TOBOR shares the hospital’s elevators many times a day with patients and visitors. It announces its intentions in a clear baritone voice. “I am about to move,” it tells fellow passengers. “Please stand clear.”… Wonder if they are ever going to hook the robots up to the VA’s VistA surprisingly good clinical software.

FDA Declines to Regulate Implantable ID Chip

In a sort-of approval for an implantable ID chip the FDA opened the door for use in humans when it declined to regulate the device, reports Wired: ‘…For the past several weeks, Applied Digital Solutions has worked to get its VeriChip — a biochip containing personal data that is similar to devices used to identify lost pets — classified as a non-regulated device. On Thursday, the company’s wish was granted. “They inquired about the use of the product for non-medical, identification purposes,” said FDA spokeswoman Sharon Snider. “If it’s a non-medical use, the FDA doesn’t regulate it.”

NYTimes: HDTV for Endoscopy

The NY Times (free registration required) is reporting on the efforts of Dr. Steven F. Palter to get manufacturers of endoscopy equipment to use HDTV: ‘… Dr. Palter said that HDTV endoscopic images “could be the difference between wearing dirty glasses or clean ones,” possibly helping doctors perceive the beginning stages of diseases that might otherwise pass unnoticed. They could also help reduce the stress of performing what for doctors can be an exacting, intense procedure…’

Web Card Enables Medical Records

The Oklahoman has a story about a company that has a wallet-sized CD-ROM which will hold your medical data: ‘…Using technology that allows information to be stored on credit-card-size compact discs, Martin developed the Medical Web Card, which can hold volumes of medical details — even X-rays — and is easily viewed by any computer with a CD- ROM drive…The first updated card is free. Subsequent cards cost $14.95…’ This is also the first story in the newly created ‘Hardware’ subject heading.