Japanese emergency responders test Vuzix smart glasses in effort to save lives

Japanese emergency responders test Vuzix smart glasses in effort to save lives
Smart glasses, AR and communication technology are being used to deliver emergency medical treatment in Japan as part of a trial to see if the products can improve patient care.

Vuzix, a supplier of smart glasses and augmented reality technology and products, is working with Juntendo University, Shizuoka Hospital, the Shunto Izu Fire Department, and AVR Japan Co. to conduct the research.

The study aims to find out if early treatment delivered to critically ill patients while they are being transported to hospital can improve patient outcomes and lifesaving rates.

In the trial, Vuzix M400 smart glasses were used by emergency medical technicians to provide two-way audio and video communications between the ambulance and hospital. Previously the only mode of communication between rescuers and doctors was by mobile phone with no visual insight for the remote party.

With the Vuizix glasses, medical information such as vital signs and ECG readouts, as well as the patient's facial expressions and other visual changes in condition, are conveyed in real time to doctors and nurses who are on standby at the hospital to which they are being transported.

Researchers hope to prove that by sharing this information in real time with the hospital, examinations, diagnoses, and preliminary medical treatment decisions can be made by various departments in the hospital before the patient even arrives. In-hospital doctors should be able to better instruct accurate in-transit emergency treatment (such as blood transfusion, surgery, thrombolytic therapy, intravascular treatment) for time-critical illnesses such as cardiovascular diseases.

Currently, Vuzix smart glasses are being used by select ambulances under the jurisdiction of the Shunto Izu Fire Department. In the future, there are plans to expand the trial to include more ambulances.