Video-conferencing apps have seen a significant surge in demand during the times of COVID-19, where people stay connected virtually for work while staying at home. The pandemic has also led to frontline responders like doctors and healthcare workers to come up with innovative ways to ensure continuity in providing quality healthcare and regular learning for the medical fraternity.
Ganga Medical Centre and Hospital in Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu, used the video-conferencing app Microsoft Teams to conduct their annual Hand and Microsurgery Operative Conference as face-to-face teaching remains suspended. The hospital conducted its annual medical conference on July 11 and 12 with more than 550 surgeons from 27 countries in attendance.
Dr S Raja Sabapathy, Chairman of the Department of Plastic Surgery, Ganga Medical Centre & Hospital, said that the hospital was finding ways to conduct its annual conference. The hospital, instead of telecasting the conference in its auditorium, decided to use Microsoft Teams. “Around 20 hours of the surgical demonstration was possible every day and we were able to demonstrate 21 procedures. Microsoft Teams’ enabled surgeons view structures less than an mm in size, even better than being at Coimbatore,” he said.
An on-ground videographer provided the live feed from specialised audio and video equipment installed in the four operating theatres. The live feeds were sent over Microsoft Teams and broadcast using Microsoft Stream to a global audience extending from Australia to Argentina. During the two days, live surgeries by five leading surgeons were conducted in parallel with a live voiceover added to the feed to explain nuances of surgical skills and techniques.
“The global crisis has made remote working, remote healthcare and remote learning the new normal. It is inspiring to see how our technology is helping healthcare institutions, doctors and hospital staff collaborate seamlessly to deliver top-notch services to patients and provide real time-learning even amid such difficult situations. Microsoft India is honoured to enable remote healthcare, consultancy and telemedicine for many healthcare institutions. We are delighted to partner with Ganga Hospital in this unique project of a live interactive surgery to audiences across the world,” Samik Roy, Country Head, Modern Work, Microsoft India, said.
“This is a fine example of how technology can rise to the occasion and solve real-life problems. We could not just replicate but bettered a real-life meeting experience for a conference that showcased very intricate and complex microsurgery procedures. We delivered a high-quality video that could enable this experience as well as real-time audio for live Q&A for a rich viewing experience. To ensure a holistic experience for the doctors, our team rose to the occasion and delivered a seamless support experience across 20 hours of live surgery,” Prashanth Subramanian, Co-Founder & Director, Quadra Systems, said.
Microsoft recently introduced a host of new features in Teams video conferencing app
. With these new features, Microsoft aims at making virtual interactions “more natural, more engaging, and ultimately, more human.” These include Together Mode, Dynamic View, Live Reactions, etc.