A computer science professor at Northeastern University created a piece of software to prepare patients for discharge from the clinic. Louise, the virtual on-screen nurse, takes the rush out of the discharge process and preps patients at their own rate. It is hoped that through this participatory process, patients will be more compliant by taking their meds on time and doing their proper rehab routines once they get home.
Using a touch screen, a patient interacts with Louise through an 11-step discharge process that takes an average of 52 minutes, a pace that can be controlled by the patient. Louise asks about medication regimens and follow-up visits. She also tailors her facial expressions and responses to the patient based upon the input patients provide on their comprehension of the discharge material. Louise will also quiz the patient to assess their understanding of medical instructions during the session.
In a pilot program at Boston Medical Center, nearly 450 patients used Louise, and the results were encouraging, said Bickmore [Timothy Bickmore, Northeaster computer science professor and developer of Louise]. “Patients in the trial group weren’t afraid to repeatedly ask Louise for instructions and didn’t feel rushed to move though the discharge process,” he said.
Full story from Northeastern University: Virtual nurse technology on path to commercial use…