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A GLIMPSE OF THE FUTURE

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Jamie Wong was not feeling well. At the age of 87, she lived alone in a home equipped with smart technology and assisted by her personal robot Zeen, model year 2032. She felt shortness of breath upon climbing the stairs which was new for her, had swollen ankles, and experienced an episode of dizziness in the evening that almost resulted in a fall. Smart technology sensors transmitted the following data to the North American Health Monitoring Station: increased respiratory rate with minimal exertion, elevated blood pressure, decreased stride length, and weight gain of 3 lbs.

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Within minutes, Jamie was connected to a Care Coordinator via her telehealth portal. The nurse practitioner reviewed Jamie’s most recent health data and clinical trends on heart rate, weight, respiratory rate, temperature, and activity levels in her electronic medical record (EMR). She also interviewed Jamie on her diet within the last 24 hours and inquired about pain as well. Assisted by the personal robot and telehealth technology, the nurse practitioner listened to Jamie’s lungs, and obtained an electrocardiogram (ECG) recording of her heart. Upon conclusion of the telehealth visit, she recommended a change to Jamie’s diet, a slight adjustment to her medications, sent a supply of respirocytes (nanobot technology) to improve shortness of breath, and ordered a physical therapy home consult to assess balance and exercise capacity. A follow-up telehealth visit was scheduled for later in the week and the nurse practitioner coordinated the patient’s care with her physician.

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Kelly Martinez, a physical therapist working in a large integrated health care network, arrived to work the next day and received the referral for a home consult for Ms. Wong. An appointment was made and the therapist was transported via driverless car to Jamie Wong’s residence. While en-route, the therapist called up the patient’s EMR to familiarize herself with the medical history, which was significant for congestive heart failure, asthma, and high blood pressure. The therapist conducted a thorough evaluation using applications (apps) on her smart phone to measure standing balance and walking stability as well as range-of-motion. Ms. Martinez was also able to access respiratory rate, heart rate, temperature, and activity metrics through the client’s wearable sensors.

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The therapist found the patient to be at risk for falls with decreased functional capacity on stairs, and transmitted a home exercise video to her home network. Ms. Martinez instructed the robot Zeen as well as the patient in home exercises, fall prevention strategies, and referred Ms. Wong to the telehealth portal’s dietary education section. Later that day, a drone delivered reality goggles to Ms. Wong to simulate functional activities to assist in improving her balance. Zeen would be standing by to guard against falls.

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During subsequent visits, the physical therapist instructed the patient in components of Velocity Exercise Specific to Task (InVEST) to facilitate improved strength and speed of functional tasks. She also ...

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