As the novel coronavirus continues to spread worldwide, healthcare workers are facing a shortage of supplies and personnel.
As of Monday, COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus, has infected more than 349,000 people worldwide and has killed more than 15,000. More than 700 people in Thailand are infected, thought the country has only recorded one death from COVID-19.
Some hospitals in Thailand are using "ninja robots" to help in the fight against coronavirus. The wheeled-robots can take the temperature of patients and handle other interactions, reducing the risk of exposure to medical workers who don't need to be present. The team creating the robots is working on ways to make the bots even more useful, so that they can deliver food, clean and handle other jobs.
These robots were originally designed to monitor recovering stroke patients. Engineering students at Chulalongkorn University in Bangkok modified the medical robots to make them useful with patients who have COVID-19. The robots can take patients' temperatures and protect the safety of healthcare workers by reducing interactions with sick people. They're mounted on wheels to easily move around.
They also have a screen, allowing doctors to video chat with sick patients. They are called ninja robots because of their black color. Professor Viboon Sangveraphunsiri and his team have introduced the robots in four Thai hospitals already. The team is working on other versions of the robot that could be used to deliver food and medicine to sick patients.