Konica Minolta announced a collaboration with the Casa Sollievo della Sofferenza Hospital in San Giovanni Rotondo, Foggia, Italy to better develop artificial intelligence (AI) in robots to assist in both urgent and non-urgent patient care. Specifically, the team wants to study the employment of robots to assist patients and support the work of nurses and doctors by conducting basic monitoring activities.
The announcement follows the recent establishment of Konica Minolta’s latest research center in Rome, the technology giant continues to invest in research and development, specifically in the field of Distributed Robotics and Artificial Intelligence (AI) within healthcare. By embedding robots with the latest and most advanced Artificial Intelligence capabilities, these systems are learning to perceive and navigate within different types of real-world environments.
Konica’s Collaboration with Casa Sollievo della Sofferenza
The ‘Casa Sollievo della Sofferenza’ hospital is one of the major healthcare centers in Italy, with 900 beds, 206 residential elderly care beds, 2,900 employees, 60,000 yearly admissions and 9,500 surgeries per year. In partnership with Konica Minolta and IIT, the hospital is initiating the assistive robotics activities. As part of a collaboration between the two research institutions, IIT has provided its ‘R1’ humanoid robot, developed to be able to assist people in different scenarios; and Konica Minolta Laboratory Europe brought its expertise in AI and Distributed Robotics. The customized Artificial Intelligence embedded within the robot is inspired by both human learning and human interaction capabilities.
“In the current setup, we are starting to use the R1 robot of IIT – Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, to accompany a patient during their daily routines. This experience is part of our current projects aimed at optimizing health care professionals’ time”, says Francesco Giuliani, ICT, and Innovation & Research Manager at IRCCS Casa Sollievo della Sofferenza Hospital.