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Lifelike Pediatric Robot Creeps Out Docs in Training

A lifelike pediatric robot capable of speaking, crying, bleeding and mimicking various ailments is drawing attention. (YouTube/Gaumard Scientific)

By    |   Tuesday, 11 September 2018 04:34 PM

A lifelike pediatric robot capable of speaking, crying, bleeding and mimicking various ailments is creeping out doctors in training, Digital Trends reported Monday.

Touted by its creators as "the world's most advanced pediatric patient simulator," Pediatric Hal was designed as a 5-year-old boy to help medical students learn various medical procedures as well as teach them how to talk to, diagnose and treat young patients in a lifelike environment.

Medical training company Gaumard Scientific is behind the eerie, lifelike robot able to simulate lifelike emotions through dynamic facial expressions, movement, and speech, according to a promotional YouTube video.

The company noted that Hal has interactive eyes that can blink, pupils that dilate as well as color-changing skin that can depict varying emotional states, trauma and neurological conditions.

Hal also can simulate a pulse, he can breathe and he can simulate lifelike responses to medications.

In a blog post, Guamard explained that Hal's lifelike physiological and neurological features such as speech sounds and eye movements "can help these professionals to diagnose the cues and symptoms exhibited by patients suffering from trauma."

The robot is so lifelike that there are concerns that medical students may find working with Hal in a tense scenario too distressing.

"We can amp the stress level up so high for the participants that people will cry, essentially have to drop out of the scenario," James Archetto, Gaumard's vice president, told Wired. "I do think there's a good potential that we'll see more of that emotional type response when the mannequin is so realistic."

However, as Archetto noted in a tweet, Hal's main function was to "train medical workers on how to approach children, who may not be forthcoming about their symptoms."

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A lifelike pediatric robot capable of speaking, crying, bleeding and mimicking various ailments is creeping out doctors in training.
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2018-34-11
Tuesday, 11 September 2018 04:34 PM
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