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Egyptian Inventor Trials Robot that Can Test for COVID-19

Egyptian Inventor Trials Robot that Can Test for COVID-19

Wednesday, 25 November, 2020 - 18:30
Cira 3 is seen next to a healthcare worker in a corridor of a hospital, amid a second wave of infections in Tanta, Egypt, November 18, 2020. (Reuters)

With Egypt facing a second coronavirus wave, an inventor is trialing a remote-control robot which can test for COVID-19, take the temperature of patients, and warn them if they don’t wear masks at a private hospital north of Cairo.


Mahmoud el-Komy, who designed the robot, called Cira-03, says it can help limit exposure to infection and prevent the transmission of the virus.


His creation, which has a human-like face and head and robotic arms, can take blood tests, perform echocardiograms and X-rays, and display the results to patients on a screen attached to its chest.


“I tried to make the robot seem more human, so that the patient doesn’t fear it. So they don’t feel like a box is walking in on them,” he said.


“There has been a positive response from patients. They saw the robot and weren’t afraid. On the contrary, there is more trust in this because the robot is more precise than humans.”


Cira-03 tests a patient for coronavirus by cupping their chin and then extending an arm with a swab into their mouth.


Abu Bakr El-Mihi, head of a private hospital where the robot is being tested, said they were using the robot to take the temperature of anyone suspected of having COVID-19.


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