VANCOUVER – When Trudi, (nicknamed by a staff member at the hospital in Vancouver), the first bug killing robot using a UV light, is turned on it makes a sound similar to a space shuttle launch system.
The robot says in a digital monotone voice within a treatment room: “Disinfecting will commence in 15 seconds; please leave the room.”
Then it continues on saying, “Disinfecting process started,” while its thin vertical bulbs give off powerful ultraviolet rays while it any viruses or germs that might be lurking in the area.
The Vancouver hospital is the first one in Canada to use the robot, formally named Tru-D SmartUVC, while health officials across the nation look for methods of protecting vulnerable patients from being exposed to potentially deadly bugs like C. difficile, and norovirus.
B.C. health officials began a pilot project that will see if Trudi along with a similar device – each have been tested for five months – to decide if technology should be used across the province in health-care facilities.
Dr. Elizabeth Bryce, the medical director for infection control at Vancouver Coastal Health, said following a demonstration of Trudi Fridaz that “We’ve been very impressed with the almost complete eradication of organisms, even when we take it to high concentrations.”
She also said that they hope the use of the bug killing robot will lower the rates of hospital bugs such as superbugs.
The device is 1.65 meters tall, with UV bulbs running vertically up its clear shaft, similar to R2-D2 from the blockbuster “Star Wars.” It does not have the ability to move by itself and must be physically wheeled around to the hospital rooms.