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Robot doctor encourages personal healthcare

31 December 2008

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A “robot doctor” is being tested by six GP practices in the north east in a bid to encourage people to take care of their health.

The new technology, which is available in South Tyneside, Gateshead and Sunderland PCTs, measures a person’s height, weight and blood pressure discretely and quickly.

Early evidence from the trials show more people are choosing to have a “mini MOT” to keep track of their health without having to book an appointment with medical staff.

A doctor at one of the surgeries using the machine said although people still do need the “human touch” it is a welcome addition to the surgery.

Central Surgery in South Shields is using the new technology to promote the importance of having a healthy blood pressure.

Alison Campbell, the surgery’s practice manager, said: “We have tried other ways of helping patients to do this themselves but patients like the machine because it does all the work.”

She added a “starting point for improving your health might be to have your blood pressure, height and weight measured.”

Copyright © Press Association 2008

South Tyneside Primary Care Trust

Do you think this new technology could help patients to improve their health? Your comments (terms and conditions apply):

“A robot programmed sufficiently could outperform the cleverest doctor eventually, holding all medical records profiling and comparing past with present providing much better diagnoses sooner from a knowledge of cutting edge interventions etc without subjectivity, a leading problem in diagnosis” – F Fisher, Lancs