Patients and family members visiting Baptist Medical Center Jacksonville and Wolfson Children's Hospital may see a new, irresistible face in the hospital halls. Its name is Moxi, and it's intelligent, dedicated to its job, has expressive eyes and is happy to pose for selfies. Baptist Health is the first health system in Florida to welcome Moxi, a point-to-point robot designed to assist nurses and other clinical care team members with tasks that would otherwise take them away from direct patient care.
Though it may be described as cute, Moxi has a serious purpose: helping nurses and care teams practice at the top of their license, freeing up time for medical team members to care for patients and improving overall clinical flow and efficiency.
"Today, our team members spend time retrieving and gathering supplies, medicine and patient items," said Tammy Daniel, DNP, senior vice president and chief nursing officer at Baptist Health. "Moxi's support will allow them to focus on people as opposed to tasks, and on what they do best: patient care."
Nationally, nursing staff may spend a considerable amount of their time on routine, non-patient-facing tasks, which is why Moxi was designed and created to help with:
Delivering lab samples and medications that are typically hand-delivered
Distributing personal protective equipment and lightweight medical equipment
Getting treatment items from central supply that are not stocked on patient care units
Picking up items that have been left for patients at the front desk
"We are continually looking for innovative ways to support our team in caring for our patients, which is why I am so pleased to see this project begin," said Michael A. Mayo, DHA, FACHE, president and CEO, Baptist Health. "Artificial intelligence combined with robotic process automation in a tool like Moxi provides a way to improve hospital functions -- giving our team members time back in their day to work where they are most needed."
Moxi is equipped with an arm, gripper hand and mobility that enable it to transport lightweight medical resources and navigate hospital hallways. Using machine learning technology and an array of sensors, Moxi maps the hospital and uses its mechanized arm to navigate multiple types of doors. Its mobile base contains three unique-sized locked drawers that help secure items during transport.
Designed to be compatible with the busy environments of health systems, Moxi's core technical features include:
- Social intelligence: Moxi won't bump into people or objects in hallways and happily poses for selfies
- Mobile manipulation: Moxi can interact with the hospital's existing environment, such as Americans with Disabilities Act-compliant doors and elevators, to gain access across the entire facility without requiring a significant investment in infrastructure
- Human-guided learning: The more team members use Moxi, the more Moxi learns and adapts to the environment and way of doing things
Baptist Health has deployed two Moxi robots within the J. Wayne & Delores Barr Weaver Tower at Baptist Jacksonville and Wolfson Children's Hospital. Its initial implementation is expected to last six to eight months followed by an evaluation period.
Support for this initiative was provided by the Reid Endowment for Technology at Baptist Health, established in 2008, to support clinical and information technology to advance the use of technology for both medical and information purposes. Additional support was provided by the Miller Electric Technology Endowment at Baptist Health, established in 2014, to provide equipment to enhance technology.