New virtual device connects doctors to patients

A healthcare provider in the UAE has launched a comprehensive, end-to-end multi-gadget solution that can connect doctors with patients in a virtual set-up.

SmartDoc, launched by Al-Futtaim Health, is a multi-gadget device that will be sent to patients’ homes or workplaces by HealthHub or Tashafi clinics at the time of consultation.
“This will allow doctors to remotely conduct a full patient examination, listen to the patient’s heart, look into the eyes or ears, and even do an electrocardiography for heart conditions,” said Dr Haidar Al Yousuf, managing director of Al- Futtaim Health. The technology allows a nurse and physician to conduct a medical exam from patients’ home and remotely diagnose and treat common symptoms such as fever, cold, ear infection, stomach ache, sore throat, congestions, urinary symptoms, etc. SmartDoc is equipped with the latest diagnostic technology to check vitals such as pulse-oximeter, weight/height and BMI, thermometer, non-invasive blood pressure, ECG, electronic stethoscope, spirometer, respiratory rate and glucometer. “PCR tests can also be arranged, provided all symptoms match with regulatory guidelines,” added Dr Yousuf. In addition, SmartDoc uses advanced instruments that can record audiogram hearing and video laryngoscope tests, along with PTZ (pan, tilt, zoom) medical cameras. The cameras are fully controlled by the physician with their patient, while simultaneously viewing real-time comprehensive medical data to determine the appropriateness of telemedicine on a case-by-case basis.
Real-time diagnosis. “The device connects the patient to a physician in real time for a full diagnosis,” said Dr Yousuf. “The service is focused on increasing access by reaching the patient at home or work, elevating quality of care, capabilities, and expertise in the healthcare space.” Following this, depending on requirement, samples are collected for further tests and medicines are also delivered to patients’ homes. The device and service were launched in partnership with global insurance provider MetLife. Andrew Stocker, head of employee benefits at MetLife Gulf told Khaleej Times the service was launched as a long-term solution to make healthcare services more accessible to insured UAE residents in a post-pandemic world. “Currently, only members in Dubai have access to the programme. We will roll it out across the UAE over time,” said Dr Yousuf. A video of the device and working methodology was showcased to the media at the Al-Futtaim Health headquarters in Dubai Festival City on Tuesday. The services will be rolled out to segments of MetLife’s corporate insured members starting July 3, officials said.

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