P.1 Smart Video Switching and Recording System for Operating Room
I am a specialized gynecologic surgeon practicing in Portland, OR. I previously was faculty at Emory University and sponsored a capstone project some years ago.
The problem I am presenting is this:
- the operating room has become a combination of surgical medicine and technology management. The number of electronic devices we use throughout the operating room is legion, and these devices all need to be managed by a circulating nurse who is not scrubbed into the operative field.
- The vast majority of the time, circulating nurses are experts in surgical nursing but not experts in technology. Very frequently they struggle to manage the many different devices. In many cases the doctors are far more expert in the management of these devices than the nurses, but the doctors are scrubbed into the surgery and thus cannot push any of the buttons.
- Usually we know exactly what we want the technology to do, but it can be absolutely maddening to get the nursing staff to actually make the technology work, when they are often not highly skilled at it
- There has to be a better way!!
There are so many different things in the operating room that could be improved. What I am imagining is a smart operating room, like Alexa for the OR, or apple iHome for the OR. You speak to a rudimentary AI and it does what you want. Turns on the overhead OR lights. Switches video feeds to different screens. Turns on recording equipment for video. The ideas are endless. In a sense, all of this stuff should be voice activated and controlled by the surgeon, and in my mind its pretty basic stuff. But right now it just doesn’t exist.
Instead what we have is a mix of a zillion different brands of stuff that doesn’t talk to each other, and no automation at all.
In my mind the first step would be the video switching system. If I could say “iOR put the robot video feed on screens 1 2 and 3” or “iOR start recording the robot video stream” and it consistently worked, that would actually be amazing. Its nuts that I can’t do that now but we can’t. Right now the video switching is dominated by Stryker, and their technology, even the newest version, is rudimentary at best. It needs to just be an iPad and and big hard drive and a breakout box that switches video, with Siri controlling it all (or some equivalent). There is no reason there needs to be a huge box doing all of this stuff in this day and age. And the huge boxes that exist now are terrible anyway. For some reason they use really low quality touchscreens and have terrible problems managing large datasets, which has to be down to terrible software.
Honestly if someone could break through and create an industry standard AI for the operating room that manufacturers would actually talk to, and it could control a lot of different things, it would be groundbreaking, and huge business as well.