Here's How Google Glass Could Transform Visits To The Doctor Office
Doctors and nurses scribbling notes by hand or manually entering patient information into a computer may soon be a thing of the past.
Nashville-based startup Octovis, Inc. is working with doctors to bring Google Glass technology — the $1,500 wearable computing device — into examining rooms and operating rooms to make it easier for doctors to take notes and access patient information, like MRIs or other images during surgery.
We first read about Octovis in The Tennessean and reached out to CEO and founder Ryan Macy, for comment.
How it works
Instead of emergency room uses, which we've written about before, Octovis wants in on the doctor-patient interaction in an exam room: The doctor collects a ton of information about the patient, either by hand, later transferring it to the electronic health record, or, directly typing the patient's words into a computer.
This is one of the main interactions Octovis thinks Glass can make more efficient.
Imagine: A doctor walks into the room wearing Glass, which is set to record audio. The Octovis software grabs the natural language — tech speak for conversation — from the room and automatically enters the relevant information into the patient's electronic health record. Octovis doesn't store the information, but acts more like a middleman between the Google Glass technology and the doctor's record keeping technology.
Octovis is also developing software to help out in the surgical suite. A surgeon wearing Glass can use the screen to access cat scans or other patient images, right at the table — instead of having to log onto a computer. "Our application of Google Glass allows the surgeon to view MRIs, cat scans, etc., so they have more relevant information and can focus on the surgical site and not leave patient," Macy told Business Insider.
Here's what's next
Octovis is planning to market the technology as a subscription service directly to doctors through partnerships with health informatics companies. He wouldn't comment on price.
Like any new technology, some are skeptical about Glass in doctors' offices. The big worry seems to be that it could actually provide more distractions rather than streamline care. In April, Pacific Standard reported on the rise of malpractice cases related to doctors' distraction by smartphones in the operating room. That shouldn't be a problem with the Octovis software — it blocks other uses of Glass, like texting or Twitter.
Other people worry about patient privacy. Healthcare institutions will have to develop policies on how Google Glass technology can be used in their facilities. And, of course, some "old dog" healthcare professionals will shun the "new trick" of this technology.
Octovis, Inc. is set to officially launch on August 21, 2014.
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