Video conferencing is not exactly a new tool out there. In the business world, web cams have been used as a method of allowing people outside the room to be present at all important business meetings at the workplace. But what if video conferencing could be used not only as a business tool, but a medical one as well? Like something out of a sci-fi movie, new developments in video conferencing software and technology are now giving doctors the ability to conference in with other specialists in order to decide upon a quick diagnosis that may prevent potentially fatal ailments. The beauty of the system lies within its functionality of easily sharing files with others on the same system. Not just standard picture files either, but high-resolution videos and x-rays can be sent with the click of a button.
Lifesize 220-video conference system:
Using Logitech technology, a hardware division named Life size has created intuitive HD videoconferencing systems that can be used in a variety of standard and unusual scenarios. While the 220 system is suitable for an office environment, its straightforward nature has allowed it to cross be used in medical practices, schools, universities and aged care centers.
Anyone in the business world understands that a strong organisational culture is crucial to establish and maintain a healthy work environment. HCCU used 220 technology to maintain company culture across its 14 separate locations across the United States. Furthermore it also enabled the company to save thousands of dollars on flights and accommodation that it would have to use to send someone out to each branch from their central headquarters.
The George Washington University recently started using 220 systems to record and stream lectures for those unable to make it into classes. Additionally it enables future lecturers and tutors to attend staff meetings when they where not present at the campus itself, minimising communication repetition while simultaneously speeding up the education process.
Lifesize’s most valuable application has to be its ability to be used in medical scenarios and aged care centres. Imagine an older person in one of these aged care centres and then suddenly they feel unwell. They can use the video conferencing technology to consult with a doctor about their symptoms without having to leave the comfort of their accommodation. This could have untold benefits for those with walking disabilities or better yet could be used in an emergency situation.
Doctors like geriatric specialists could talk to their patients and then quickly conference with other specialists to try and find a suitable diagnosis. Doctor’s from around the world in all fields of medicine could be on the same call simultaneously and could even look at scans and patients history in a matter of minutes. Even doctors in remote locations could get outside help from other doctors as long as they had a secure internet connection. The applications for this technology are only just beginning to be realised. It’s easy to imagine that in the near future nearly all households will have a system like this that allows them to communicate with each both visually and audibly.