CU News

CU Researchers Present Telemedicine Robots for Care of COVID-19 Patients

Chulalongkorn University rolls out three new telemedicine robots developed by Professor Dr. Viboon Sangveraphunsiri, Professor at the Department of Mechanical Engineering and Head of the Regional Centre of Robotic Technology, to Dr. Khate Sripratak, cardiologist from the Central Chest Disease Institute. The robots will be used for communication between COVID-19 patients, medical staff, and interpreters, and  will be stationed at Bamrasnaradura Infectious Diseases Institute, Rajavithi Hospital, and the Central Chest Disease Institute.  

King Chulalongkorn Memorial Hospital has successfully developed telemedicine robots to help care for the elderly and patients that are recovering from strokes.  This innovation will now be available for patients with chronic conditions and need urgent treatment.  Doctors can reach patients immediately through video conference systems, reducing travel time.

Professor Nijasri Charnnarong, Chief of the Center of Excellence in Stroke at Chulalongkorn Memorial Hospital, led the telemedicine project, with collaboration from the Faculty of Medicine and the Faculty of Engineering.  Professor Viboon Sangveraphunsiri (Professor at the Department of Mechanical Engineering and Head of the Regional Centre of Robotic Technology) and Associate Professor Krisna Piravej (Head of Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, King Chulalongkorn Memorial Hospital) headed the development of the robots and physiotherapy systems.  The project was financially supported by Haxter Robotics Co and Softsquare Group.

The robot can assess the patient’s condition and help doctors and nurses track the patient’s symptoms through telemedicine. Other functions include reminding patients to take medicine and video calls for teaching patients how to perform physical therapy at home. As of today, there are plans to deploy the telemedicine robots to help treat COVID-19 patients across hospitals in Bangkok and other provinces.

Haxter Robotics Co is a start-up company set up by the CU Innovation Hub  back in 2017.  The company is responsible for commercializing the robots from Chulalongkorn University researchers.

Chula’s encouragement and support for research is excellent for teachers, students, and the public.

Associate Professor Dr. Suchana Chavanich Faculty of Science, Chulalongkorn University