Doctor Told California Man That He Was Dying Via a Robot

Henrietta Strickland
March 11, 2019

The Kaiser Permanente Medical Center, where Quintana was being treated, responded in a statement carried by United States media in which it offered condolences to the family but disputed the characterization that the news was delivered by "robot".

After arriving at her husband's bedside, Mr Quintana's wife was told by a nurse "this is our policy, this is how we do things".

A doctor told a man he was going to die via robot videolink.

Sharing an image on her Facebook page, she wrote: "Please share this".

Spangler said in her post that if she was there at the time, she would have told the robot to "roll his Ass out and send in a Human".

Granddaughter Annalisia Wilharm, 33, was alone with Quintana when a nurse popped in to say a doctor would be making his rounds. This was regarding a friends Dad a couple of hours ago.

Mr Quintana's daughter, Catherine, told KTVU that the family was further upset because her father had trouble hearing the doctor through the speakers, forcing Ms Wilharm to relay the awful news.

Steve Pantilat, chief of the palliative medicine division at University of California, San Francisco, said he did not know the details in the case, but that robot technology had done wonders for patients and their families, some of whom were too far away for in-person visits.

But it fell short of saying more about when, and under what circumstances, its doctors use telepresence robots to provide care for patients. "Meanwhile, this guy is telling him, 'So we've got your results back, and there's no lung left".

Senior vice president of the Kaiser Permanente Greater Southern Alameda County, Michelle Gaskill-Hames, has defended the use of the machine, saying that it's usually used for follow-up visits where an initial face-to-face visit was made.

"We regret falling short in meeting the patient's and family's expectations in this situation and we will use this as an opportunity to review how to improve patient experience with tele-video capabilities".

"It does not, and did not, replace ongoing in-person evaluations and conversations with a patient and family members".

"I was going to lose my grandfather", she told KTVU. "We knew that this was coming and that he was very sick".

Wilharm said her grandfather, a family man who kept every childhood drawing he ever gave her, deserved better.

"He was such a sweet guy", she said.

Family friend Julianne Spangler slammed the hospital for its lack of care, saying this was "not the way to show value and compassion to a patient".

She later said it was "an extremely frustrating situation", and "an atrocity of how care and technology are colliding".

"Thank you Fremont Kaiser for your compassion to a man who is 100 per cent aware and alert".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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