In this modern world, it is normal to find a robotic machine accomplishing several tasks, either in households or in public, and yet have no worries even if such tasks are complex. We have watched these in movies, seen them physically, either as guards, sales agents, etc...
On the contrary, accomplishing tasks in medicine or biomedical field is what many are still finding ways to believe that it is possible for a robot to do. In laboratory medicine, drawing a blood sample is one of the very first tasks to perform to almost every patient. For those who know, this is a very challenging step, especially to overweight people whose veins are in deep positions.
However, the robot, Veebot, in this video seems to have been invented to close this gap, as it can be seen drawing a blood sample as though the vein was placed on the skin.
This is possible because the robot uses an infrared light, a special camera and ultrasound combined with image - analysis software to choose a vein and confirms that enough blood is flowing through it - tasks the best trained phlebotomist can never accomplish.
In addition, the robot lines up the needle and inserts it in to the arm at the calculated correct depth.
The whole draw takes about one(1) minute plus additional time, depending on how much blood is being collected.
Currently the robot chooses the best vein about 83% of the time, which is on par with the average phlebotomist. The company hopes to get this rate up to 90% before attempting to enter clinical trial, though.
This issue of robots drawing blood samples will certainly be very comforting to many who may just prefer not to have interaction of any sort with humans.