Many of us may have heard the Vulcan phrase, “Live long and prosper” while watching Star Trek re-runs. Well, that phrase may become relevant if the Qualcomm Foundation challenge delivers results. The foundation is funding a $10 million competition to help consumers live longer and better with help from a Star Trek-inspired device developed through real-world technology.
The prize will go to the team that develops the best-performing solution for remotely measuring and verifying 15 different health conditions or diagnoses and five vital signs, while also providing the best user experience. While the device will have consumer applications, Qualcomm’s Mark Winter says the intent is not to by-pass health care providers but “help to make their job more efficient by having better communications and better information.”
Qualcomm believes if nurses of all different scopes and levels of capability begin to really use and master this technology so that they are able to interact and work with the “Star Trek” device, it will make them more valuable in the clinical workforce.
Ultimately, nurses may be able to meet the challenges of increasing patient loads, even when there is a physical shortage of available personnel, by remotely assessing patients through the so-called Tricorders. The device could offer an innovative way to improve communication and quality of care – one of the major complaints patients have about the health care system today.
With the advances being made almost daily in health care, a career in nursing likely will incorporate some pretty amazing technology as well. Visit www.fortis.edu to see which nursing career path might be right for you.