Being as I live in the North, a story such as this always piques my interest. With such difficulty accessing many services – especially in remote communities – Northern governments must find inventive ways to deliver services such as health care. Many communities in the NWT have access to telehealth technology, in place since 1998. Using video conferencing, telehealth allows doctors to interact with patients over long distances. Ultimately, such interaction saves the Government of the Northwest Territories money it would spend flying patients to see doctors in Yellowknife or Edmonton.
As I have said before, I am a science fiction nerd and whenever people start talking about robots I get a bit excited. Remote diagnosis, treatment, and, in the future, surgery with the assistance of remote-robotic prostheses is the wave of the future. It also might be the solution isolated communities such as those in the North need to reduce health care costs and improve access.
At least, that is, until nano-robotic technology simply repairs all that ails, but that is for a different post.