Doctor Safety Assistant
Codename: DOC’S-ARM Doctor Safety Assistant for Remote Monitoring Innovation by Dr. Sameer Arbat, MD, FCCP
In the middle of a the COVID-19 Pandemic were facing a severe shortage of resources such as PPE Kits, Respirators and Sanitizers. The country-wide lockdown with a complete shutdown on e-commerce had made it difficult to procure newer medical instruments. Protecting the health-care workers from cross-infection was a big challenge for all of us.
What is Doctor Safety Assistant?
The Doctor Safety Assistant codename “DOC’S-ARM” or “Doctor Safety Assistant for Remote Monitoring” is an audio-visual communication device which can be easily assembled by any doctor. This is a do-it-yourself assembly in which the metal rod in a regular IV stand is replaced with a basic selfie stick, with a smart phone mounted on it. The utility of this Doctor Safety Assistant is to reduce the usage of PPE kits and to reduce the chances of cross-infection to the Health Care Workers who are working in an isolation ward like the ones designated for COVID 19 suspect or confirmed cases. A similar assembly if bought from E-commerce sites or the Factory, can cost you anywhere between 100 to 300 US$.
How to assemble the Doctor Safety Assistant?
To assemble the Doctor Safety Assistant or DOC’S-ARM, you can use any regular IV stand with wheels. Start with removing the metal rod above and fix a selfie stick into it. You can use an adhesive tape too. Just make sure the assembly is firm and does not fall off. Now, mount a smart phone on the selfie stick. Make sure the phone is charged and has an internet connection. Your “Doctor Safety Assistant for Remote Monitoring” is now fully assembled and ready to use.
How to disinfect?
It is advisable to use a dedicated phone and stand for the isolation ward or ICU. The complete assembly can be easily disinfected with wipes that contain 70% isopropyl alcohol. The phone can be charged inside the isolation ward.
The uses of Doctor Safety Assistant are as follows :
- Clinical Assistant: It can be used as an assistant inside the ward thus limiting the number of doctors entering the ward. This helps in cutting down the usage of PPEs and reduce the chances of cross-infection. One doctor can carry the DOC’S-ARM with her/him while the remaining team can sit in another cabin and participate in the in-patient rounds.
- Boon for Senior Doctors: A lot of physicians are above the age of 60 and are more susceptible to the COVID-19 infection and the World Health Organization has advised them for strict home quarantine. The Doctor Safety Assistant can help in establishing audio-visual communication from inside the ward to a remote location, thus eliminating any risk of cross infection to senior doctors.
- Inter departmental reference: The device is useful for communicating with doctors for inter departmental reference and expert medical advice. This eventually limits the use of PPE without hampering the medical management of the patient.
- Patient communication with relatives: Very often patients in ICUs or isolation wards experience anxiety, depression due to lack of communication. The Doctor Safety Assistant can help in building an audio-visual communication between the patient and their attendants without any risk of cross infection.
The advantages of the Doctor Safety Assistant are :
- It is easy to assemble
- Fairly economical
- Easy to maneuver and carry around with minimal effort
- Reduces the usage of PPEs
- Limits the chances of cross-infection
- Remote monitoring of patients
- Inter-departmental references
- For senior physicians and consultants
- Patient communication with attendants