COVID-19 has caused a surge in telemedicine. Is telesurgery next?

An operating room isn’t exactly the easiest place to follow social distancing guidelines in the age of COVID-19.

Using 5G network technology, doctors in Italy recently demonstrated telesurgery could now be a valuable—and reliable—tool in allowing surgeons to do just that, according to a report published this week in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

While the first telesurgery involving a human patient was done in 2001, the idea of telesurgery gaining traction has been stymied, in part, by the lack of fast and reliable network connections (as well as a dearth of robotic surgery technology in many hospitals.)


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