Robot nurses: sent to destroy?
Beyond the Bedpan isn’t sure what to make of the new breed of hospital robots that have recently appeared in the news. Are they a wonderful tool that will make nurses’ lives easier … or death on wheels?
Back in April, Beyond the Bedpan was tickled by an April fools’ story on Nursingtimes.net that joked about community nurses being replaced with a Facebook app.
Well, that’s the last time we joke about these things. It seems that “management” were reading with interest and have taken our ideas on board.
And what did they come up with? ROBOT NURSES. That’s right, you heard us, robots.
The brand new hospital in Stirlingshire has bought the robots in the hope that they’ll do day-to-day jobs like carrying dirty washing and delivering cups of tea.
Have they never seen Terminator? Is it only a matter of time before evil cyborgs are sent from the future to kill all humans (including, one presumes, nurses)? Where will this madness end?!?
OK, so we’ve calmed down now. Beyond the Bedpan does sometimes like to make conclusions first and look at the details later. In this case, it would seem that the new robot is less Sonny from I, Robot and more, erm, Cupboard from Ikea.
So maybe they aren’t such a bad idea after all? If, as a spokesperson from the hospital claims, they won’t be replacing humans, just freeing up more time for staff to spend with patients, then isn’t that a good thing? Or is it just another way to cut jobs and save money? Do nurses have a reason to feel threatened by these machines? Or are they just another tool to help us work more efficiently?
You never know, if we’re lucky we might be able to train these walking tables to make us a morning brew. Fingers crossed.