California patient family infuriated over learning father's death via robot video

Leslie Hanson
Марта 11, 2019

The California family is devastated that 78-year-old Ernest Quintana was told on Sunday, March 3, 2019, he didn't have long to live by a doctor appearing on a robot's video screen in Fremont, Calif. KTVU reported that a robot appeared in Ernest Quintana's room, where a doctor told him by video that his lungs were failing.

Because the robot couldn't get to the left side of the bed, Ms Wilharm said she had to repeat everything the doctor was saying as her grandfather was hard of hearing in his right ear.

"That said, we don't support or encourage the use of technology to replace the personal interactions between our patients and their care teams - we understand how important this is for all concerned, and regret that we fell short of the family's expectations".

Sharing an image on her Facebook page, she wrote: "Please share this". This was regarding a friends Dad a couple of hours ago.

Wilharm was alone with her grandfather when the doctor remotely told Quintana that his lungs were failing and he would not be going home.

"The evening video tele-visit was a follow-up to earlier physician visits", Gaskill-Hames said in a written response.

Spangler said in her post that if she was there at the time, she would have told the robot to "roll his Ass out and send in a Human".

"It did not replace previous conversations with patient and family members and was not used in the delivery of the initial diagnosis".

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A septuagenarian Californian learnt of his impending death through a video link, outraging his family, who protested against the dehumanised and robotic way in which the news was delivered.

When Mr Quintana's wife arrived, she complained to hospital staff about how the news was broken to her husband.

The video meetings are warm and intimate, he said, adding that not all in-person discussions have empathy and compassion.

This is not the way to show value and...

Wilharm told CNN that at that point she had to call her mother and grandmother so they could get back to the hospital. "Unfortunately, there's nothing we can treat very effectively", he said, according to a video recording that Wilharm shot on her cellphone.

"That Robot Dr may be ok for some situations but not to tell a man he is going to die".

She later said it was "an extremely frustrating situation", and "an atrocity of how care and technology are colliding".

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