Augmenting the Local Caregiver's Abilities via Google Glass

Telemedicine with Google Glass - image courtesy of Wound Care Advantage
Telemedicine with Google Glass – image courtesy of Wound Care Advantage

Telemedicine is the kind of practical application that may make Google Glass and other wearable technologies into something revolutionary. Pristine, a company that claims to be the only company that has developed commercially available Glass-software that meets HIPPA regulations, has partnered with Wound Care Advantage (WCA) to be the first to use Google Glass to help deliver outpatient wound care.

Google Glass essentially extends the eyes and ears of experts by showing what a local caregiver sees. This allows for much faster diagnosis that not only improves productivity, but could mean better outcomes.

“The fastest way to treat a patient is to have the experts see the issue as quickly as possible, allowing for rapid treatment,” said Mike Comer, CEO of Wound Care Advantage. “The longer it takes to get a patient to appropriate experts, the higher the likelihood that the wound can become either life threatening or require an amputation. More than 62 percent of all amputees will die within five years. Pristine’s Google Glass app, EyeSight, goes a long way to helping WCA enable better outcomes,” Comer said.

This sort of technology also allows the extension of services into places where experts aren’t, such as remote and rural areas, where it takes significant windshield time and cost to see an expert.

This was a screenshot from a video about a Bluetooth enabled stethoscope from 3M.
Bluetooth Stethoscope from 3M.

This application is reminiscent of the Bluetooth stethoscope, we reported on a few years ago and how the voice prompts could transform someone with little medical knowledge into an important part of the medical diagnosis process. The Eyesight and the Bluetooth stethoscope applications point to a new era the combination of devices, sensors and the connection to the Internet augments our abilities and intelligence.

Stay tuned for more Viodi articles about this concept of the connected human.

[Added 2/6/14 – The important of using HIPPA-compliant telecommunications devices and channels is pointed out in this article about an Oklahoma-based psychiatrist who was disciplined by the Oklahoma Medical Board for using a consumer-grade, non-compliant video conference service for patient visits, as detailed in this article.]

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