While we’re still not quite sure how exactly will Google Glass be used in the future as it’s still an entirely new mobile form factor and there are still not that many applications designed for the wearable computing platform, Glass will definitely be a beneficial tool to doctors and medical staff as demonstrated with the latest hack. Shown in a video, one hacker has equipped Glass with facial recognition technology that could help doctors, nurses, and medical practitioner bring up patient information by using the camera on Glass to identify the patient with the appropriate medical records.
The application is being called MedRef for Glass and is being reported by Phone Arena.
In the past, we had learned that a separate app will potentially help Glass wearers identify people by names. Facial recognition seems to be the logical next step and MedRef could be a big win for both patients and doctors as it will help to improve the quality of care.
The use for this would be tremendous in the medical community. Not only would this feature help to reduce and prevent errors in delivering care because the wrong patient was sent in for the wrong procedures–we’ve heard of amputation horror stories where the wrong patient was amputated in the past due to errors–but it would also help to free up the doctor’s hands for other tasks.
And while using a tablet or phone in the medical setting would be a possibility, the hands-free solution offered by Google Glass may be a better fit as it would also keep things clean and sanitary. Doctors no longer need to use their hands while providing care to tap on the screen. Information would be called up and delivered to their eyes instead. This may also help prevent the transmission of diseases and the spread of germs.
Potentially, in the future, doctors and surgeons can also call up patient charts, pull up medical references, and see X-rays and patient scans using Glass.
If tablet adoption was quick in the medical community, the right set of apps for Glass will definitely make this wearable computing technology a sure hit for doctors and medical practitioners.
Hopefully, we’ll learn more about how Google will be opening up the platform and guiding developers this week at Google I/O.
There remains privacy issues still surrounding the use of Glass, and Google will need to educate and show consumers the potential of this new technology before it can really take off.