Sharp is intent on revolutionising telehealth with their healthcare support chair that combines a range of sensors for checking the user’s vitals.

The chair allows users to simultaneously record blood pressure, pulse, temperature and weight. The data is then analysed and displayed on a screen to warn patients of impending problems. All the generated data is then stored in the cloud, allowing users to track their stats over time.

The chair itself is essentially a redesign of the Emperor work chair with a healthcare twist; using existing technology in an innovative way. Other healthcare information could easily be added to the chair in the future, such as health information on nutrition and exercise.

According to Unit General Manager, Medical and Healthcare Business Developments Centre at Sharp, Makoto Nakamura, the chair was developed in response to complaints about how much time was consumed measuring each health indicator separately. “Our idea was to allow people to check their health data regularly, in places they often visit, and consult a physician promptly if there’s any change,” said Nakamura.

Sharp has revealed plans to further enhance the chair by implementing a telemedicine system so users can video conference their physician in real-time. “Because the data is all saved in the cloud, the physician would be able to give suitable advice,” said Nakamura.

The chair is an example of how technology can motivate people to be proactive and change their behaviour towards improving their health and wellness. Such a positive change would unburden healthcare facilities and allow them to focus on treating more serious conditions.

The content and image originate from Sharp’s exhibition at CEATEC 2013.

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