Uploaded on May 25, 2022
Remote healthcare on Earth and in space, presented by David Saint-Jacques
2022-05-25 – Canadian Space Agency astronaut David Saint-Jacques describes the challenges of remote healthcare delivery, and sheds light on how technologies developed in Canada could help improve healthcare on Earth and during deep-space missions.
(Credits: Canadian Space Agency, NASA, Canadian Armed Forces / Department of National Defence)
David Saint-Jacques : Before joining the space program, I was a family doctor working in remote areas in the Canadian Arctic.
One of the situations that we often encountered was one where you had a sick patient, and you didn’t have a diagnostic tool to figure out how sick they were or what the problem really was.
That’s very frustrating, because you think, if only I had a tool with me, to do this diagnostic myself, maybe I could avoid this evacuation. Maybe I could confirm what the patient needs.
The challenge of offering healthcare to astronauts on deep space missions is very similar to the challenge of offering healthcare to people living in isolated areas.
Big distances mean difficult communications, they mean difficult or impossible evacuations, less equipment, and fewer specialists available locally.
And because the challenges are so similar, well, the technological solutions are probably also very similar.
The Canadian Space Agency has decades of experience in health science and technology.
We’re well poised to spearhead this new wave of development that will help modernize healthcare for the benefit of astronauts on deep space missions of course, but also for the benefit of everybody on Earth.
It doesn’t matter if you live in a remote isolated area, if you are a military on a mission, an explorer on an expedition, if you’re a worker in a dangerous environment. We want to bring medicine to the patients.
Canada has at heart to provide quality healthcare to everybody.