BUFFALO, N.Y. – The Jacobs Institute, a non-profit medical innovation hub in Buffalo’s medical campus, commissioned a bold book released Thursday that aims to predict how technology will help treat patients over the next 25 years.
The book, titled “Future of Medicine,” makes some bold predictions. One of its centerfolds details how self-driving ambulances and drones might someday start trauma treatment sooner than it would take a victim in today’s world to arrive at the hospital.
The folks behind this book and their team of engineers believe strongly that the capable minds of both doctors and researchers will make these theories into realities.
"It's a process of both looking at what's happening now and then following the trajectories of interesting technologies, and then being able to plot those out into the future,” said executive editor Chris Cowart.
Cowart says that trajectory also means dreaming up sci-fi technology but then realistically determining the milestones that would have to be reached first to get there.
He and colleague Bill Maggio, the CEO of the Jacobs Institute, believe the technology of today will be advanced at the Institute and play a significant role in the future of medicine.
"Everything we do is targeted toward making significant advancements in how we treat neurovascular and cardiovascular disease,” Maggio said.
The non-profit is in the heart of the medical campus. It's surrounded by hospitals, the Gates Vascular Institute, and UB's medical school.
“There's a lot to be said about the way that the campus is being built and constructed. It almost forces people to collaborate,” Maggio said.
Combined, all of those facilities and their resources are working on the future. A future where, according to the book’s predictions, immunotherapy will replace chemotherapy as the primary treatment for half of cancers, virtual reality will be used on Alzheimer’s patients to slow down its degradative effects, and augmented reality may help mitigate the doctor crisis: There is a growing shortage of doctors, and doctors are increasingly stressed out by all that they have to do.
"Doctor suicide rate is actually alarmingly high, and that is one of those things, the last time I went in to my doctor, she was wearing Google glass, and was able to use that as a way to talk to me and have a real conversation, and all of the scribing was happening in the background,” Cowart said.