Robots arrive to screen Rwandan patients

In Summary

• Their main purpose is to reduce health workers' exposure to Covid-19 patients, Rwanda's Health Minister Daniel Ngamije said.

• "We need additional robots for other duties like disinfection in public space and we are working to get them," he added.

Each robot has been given Rwandan name - Akazuba, Ikizere, Mwiza, Ngabo and Urumuri.
Each robot has been given Rwandan name - Akazuba, Ikizere, Mwiza, Ngabo and Urumuri.
Image: BBC

Five humanoid robots have been delivered to Rwanda where they will assist in coronavirus screening, deliver food and drugs to patients, as well as act as video-conferencing links between patients and doctors.

Each robot has been given Rwandan name - Akazuba, Ikizere, Mwiza, Ngabo and Urumuri.

Their main purpose is to reduce health workers' exposure to Covid-19 patients, Rwanda's Health Minister Daniel Ngamije said.

"We need additional robots for other duties like disinfection in public space and we are working to get them," he added.

The robots are manufactured by a Belgium-based company. Rwanda's health ministry says the units have a number of abilities, including:

  • Screening 50 to 150 people per minute
  • Recording and storing patient data
  • Alerting health workers to abnormalities
  • Warning people who aren't wearing marks, or are wearing them improperly

Rwanda has two Covid-19 treatment facilities - one is on the outskirts of the capital, Kigali, and the other in the south-eastern town of Nyamata.

The health ministry says there are 297 confirmed cases in the country, 203 recoveries and no deaths.