Remote consultant is a system for remote real-time auscultation. It was developed in-house at the research and development unit at the department of biomedical engineering in Västerbotten County Council.
The system utilizes two digital stethoscopes from Littmann and a custom built streaming solution. The reason for using an actual stethoscope also for the doctor in the receiving end was to make sure that the sound would be experienced in exactly the same way as if the patient had been in the same room. Listening to the sound through headphones does not give the same sensation.
In Slussfors the system has been used to listen to heart and lung sounds of scheduled patients visiting the virtual health room. In these situations the doctor has been 60 kilometers away, in Storuman cottage hospital. An assistant nurse from the community home care has been present in the virtual health room to hold the stethoscope and assist in the examination.
The system is supposed to be used in combination with a videoconferencing system to enable visual feedback.