Saturday 21 February 2009

Mobile healthcare ...

We will need machines to look after people more in future.  I have covered many times the idea of robots helping to look after people when the demographics mean that there aren't enough humans to do it.  But in the developing world, the machinery is less likely to be robotic.  Mobile phone credit already provides a trusted currency in parts of Africa in particular.  There are many more mobile phones than hospital beds in those developing areas, and these may provide the initial technology to offer healthcare in the pocket.  Such devices can be used to remind patients to take medication and get vaccinations.  They can also be used to notify people when epidemics are taking place and help model the spread of infections.  Mobile phones already do many things which people never intended the first such machines to do; healthcare may be one more of these things.  

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