Boosting the hospital by integrating mobile robotic assistance systems: a comprehensive classification of the risks to be addressed

Lukas Bernhard, Patrik Schwingenschlögl, Jörg Hofmann, Dirk Wilhelm, Alois Knoll

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Mobile service robots are a promising technology for supporting workflows throughout the hospital. Combined with an understanding of the environment and the current situation, such systems have the potential to become invaluable tools for overcoming personal shortages and streamlining healthcare workflows. However, few robotic systems have actually been translated to practical application so far, which is due to many challenges centered around the strict and unique requirements imposed by the different hospital environments, which have not yet been collected and analyzed in a structured manner. To address this need, we now present a comprehensive classification of different dimensions of risk to be considered when designing mobile service robots for the hospital. Our classification consists of six risk categories – environmental complexity, hygienic requirements, interaction with persons and objects, workflow flexibility and autonomy – for each of which a scale with distinct risk levels is provided. This concept, for the first time allows for a precise classification of mobile service robots for the hospital, which can prove useful for certification and admission procedures as well as for defining architectural and safety requirements throughout the design process of such robots.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1
JournalAutonomous Robots
Volume48
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2024

Keywords

  • Clinical workflow assistance
  • Healthcare robotics
  • Mobile robotics
  • Service robotics

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