The ergonomic design in the Surgical OR of information technology systems has been and continues to be a large problem. Numerous disparate information systems with unique hardware and display configurations create an environment similar to the chaotic environments of air traffic control. Patient information systems tend to show all available statistics making it difficult to isolate the key, relevant vitals for the patient. Interactions in this sterile environment are still being done with the traditional keyboard and mouse designed for cubicle office workflows.
This presentation will address the shortcomings of the current design paradigm in the Surgical OR that relate to Information Technology systems. It will offer a perspective that addresses the ergonomic deficiencies and predicts how future technological innovations will integrate into this vision. Part of this vision includes a Surgical OR PACS prototype, developed by GE Healthcare Technologies, that addresses ergonomic challenges of PACS in the OR that include lack of portability, sterile field integrity, and UI targeted for diagnostic radiologists.
GWindows (gesture control) developed by Microsoft Research and Voice command will allow for the surgeons to navigate and review diagnostic imagery without using the conventional keyboard and mouse that disrupt the integrity of the sterile field. This prototype also demonstrates how a wireless, battery powered, self contained mobile PACS workstation can be optimally positioned for a surgeon to reference images during an intervention as opposed to the current pre-operative review.
Lessons learned from the creation of the Surgical OR PACS Prototype have demonstrated that PACS alone is not the end all solution in the OR. Integration of other disparate information systems and presentation of this information in simple, easy to navigate information packets will enable smoother interactions for the surgeons and other healthcare professionals in the OR. More intuitive IT system interaction is required for all the key players in the OR not just the surgeons.
To improve interactions, there are a number of emerging technologies that have the potential to revolutionize the way healthcare professionals interact with computer-based applications in the Surgical OR. A number of these technologies will enable surgeons to interact with vital data without interrupting the sterile field or maneuvering their bodies to view relevant information - information will automatically display for healthcare individuals in a just-in-time manner without navigational challenges.