Graduate Thesis Or Dissertation


Patient Compliance Effects on Simulated Ebola Medical Care Delivery with a Telepresence Robot Public Deposited

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  • When treating highly infectious diseases, patient compliance with caregiver recommendations is crucial. Many patients who contract Ebola Virus Disease have symptoms including vomiting and severe diarrhea and die from the resulting dehydration if they do not drink enough fluids. Telepresence robots are useful in the context of Ebola treatment for performing patient interactions without further risk of contamination to care providers. As part of this Masters thesis, a study was conducted to determine if there is a difference in compliance when an individual is directed by someone using a telepresence robot compared to when they are directed by someone wearing Ebola-style personal protective equipment (PPE). This work is relevant to the compliance of patients in the treatment of Ebola for simple tasks such as reminding patients to eat and drink water where telepresence robots may be a suitable replacement for healthcare workers in the role of Ebola patient supervisor or supporter. Simple tasks are important to the survival of Ebola patients, who often perish from dehydration, and can be easily accomplished using a telepresence robot, whereas changed IV fluid or other medical tasks cannot be. The results show that there was no statistically significant difference between the subject group instructed by the person in the Ebola PPE and the subject group instructed by the person using the telepresence robot by performing single factor ANOVAs on the resulting data. Based on these results telepresence robots may be able to replace physically present healthcare workers for some tasks.
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