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Robotics in Healthcare: Growth and Innovation

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Since 2015, there has been a drastic increase in the interest of robotics in healthcare. This is further proven by Siemens recently announced unconventional partnership with the Medical University of South Carolina. Mark A. Scheurer, M.D. the Chief, Integrated Center of Clinical Excellence, Children's and Women's Health, and Chief Medical Officer of MUSC Children’s Hospital describes the mission of this partnership as working towards a better healthcare experience by thinking methodically through families’ experience in the hospital. He emphasizes that over everything the family experience is most important.

The medical robotics market is expected to grow quite rapidly throughout the next few years. Healthcare Intelligence Markets says the Medical Robotics Market size is expected to grow at a Compound Annual Growth Rate of +5% during 2019-2026. In Research and Markets "Healthcare Robotics: Global Market Analysis and Forecasts" 2017 report they predicted the following growth:

“The market for healthcare robots, including surgical robots, hospital robots, and rehabilitation robots, will grow in revenue from $1.7 billion in 2016 to $2.8 billion by 2021 at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 9.7%,” their report said.

Many reports on the nature of healthcare and robotics focus on specifically surgical applications and attribute much of this predicted growth in the medical robotics market to the demand for using robotics in minimally invasive surgery.

Siemens and their Healthineers are taking a more holistic approach to applying robotics and technology to healthcare. This is made clear within their purpose: “At Siemens Healthineers, our purpose is to enable healthcare providers to increase value by empowering them on their journey towards expanding precision medicine, transforming care delivery, and improving patient experience, all enabled by digitalizing healthcare.”

Their commitment to this purpose is seen in their work towards being able to use a patient’s digital twin to predict the outcome of different patient treatments in order to provide patients with the best care possible. Additional Siemens AI technology is being used to guide the design of MUSC’s new Shawn Jenkins Children’s Hospital. This all powers Siemens goal of creating better outcomes in the healthcare system but with a lower cost.

Robert Hartwig, a health care economist with the University of South Carolina describes the health industry as being in a crucial “era of experimentation,which is necessary as health expenditures threaten to engulf a fifth of the country’s gross domestic product.” Meaning that Siemens and their partnership with MUSC is right in line with the direction the health industry is heading in.

Bernd Montag, the CEO of Siemens’ Healthineers division describes this partnership as  “...building something like the GPS of health care, It should eventually affect everybody.” This innovative 10 year partnership is definitely one to watch in the coming years, especially within the construction of MUSC’s new Shawn Jenkins Children’s Hospital.




Edited by Maurice Nagle
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