MADURAI: The COVID-19 patients at the Government Rajaji Hospital (GRH) are to be served by three robots donated by SASTRA Deemed-to-be University in Thanjavur. Speaking at the inaugural function held at the hospital on Thursday, Minister for Revenue R B Udhayakumar said the robots costing Rs 1 lakh each would serve food and medicine to COVID-19 patients at the exclusive COVID-19 Superspeciality Hospital.
The Minister, during his address, said the robots would effectively aid in maintaining social distance at the hospital block where COVID-19 patients are being treated. "These robots would convey any message from the doctors and nurses to the patients. Besides, they would carry water, food, fruits, and medicines," he added.
Foundation for Innovation Research at SASTRA Technology (FIRST) is a technology-based business incubator initiative that nurtures start-up businesses. Tiruchy-based Propellor Technologies that was incubated with the FIRST invented the multi-functionality robot named ZAFI GO.
Specially designed to support doctors and nurses at COVID-19 wards, the robot has a range of 1,500-metre radio-controllable system. It also has trays mimicking arms to carry food and essentials weighing a total of 15 kilograms. With the help of a pre-programmed software, the robot facilitates interaction between the healthcare workers and the patients, said sources. Each robot can serve 10-15 patients in one go and its battery back-up would last for about three hours. SASTRA Deemed-to-be University had earlier donated five ZAFI GO robots to Thanjavur Medical College Hospital and two robots to Mahatma Gandhi Memorial Government Hospital in Tiruchy.
Also present during the inaugural were Collector TG Vinay and Dean Dr J Sangumani.