At the St. Joseph's Hospital & Health Centre in Île-à-la-Crosse on February 25th and the Northlands College Nursing Skills Lab in Air Ronge on February 27th, the U of S College of Nursing officially named the community nursing robots.
In fall 2012, the college held a contest in both Île-à-la-Crosse and La Ronge to ask local residents and surrounding communities to name their community nursing robots, which are being used to distribute U of S undergraduate nursing education to students in both communities. The College received numerous entries and thanks those who helped make the robot naming contest a great success.
During the robot naming event on February 25th in Île-à-la-Crosse, the college announced the official name selected for the Île-à-la-Crosse nursing robot as IleXPERT ("Pert"), as submitted by Sharon Hoffman. When asked for the reasoning behind her submission, Hoffman says, "Ile X is our community in short hand and I thought PERT could stand for "professional expertise remote technology".
On February 27th, the college hosted another event, this time in Air Ronge, and announced the official name selected for the Air Ronge nursing robot as RoboGale ("Gale"), as submitted by Waldo Berg. According to Berg, "The explanation behind the name is simple. It combines "robot" and the most famous nurse of all time, Florence Nightingale." Waldo was unable to attend the official naming event, but sent the college a message about his submission.
The College of Nursing started using the Remote Presence technology to deliver nursing courses in Air Ronge and Île-à-la-Crosse in September 2012. By using this new technology, nursing students living in northern communities have access to nursing education, without having to leave home. The goal of launching this technology is to address the critical shortage of healthcare workers in rural and remote communities. The robot removes geographical barriers to education and supports students to "learn where they live".
For more information on Remote Presence technology, click here.