Safety design for medical robots

Annu Int Conf IEEE Eng Med Biol Soc. 2009;2009:7208-11. doi: 10.1109/IEMBS.2009.5335275.


The use of robots in medicine is increasing, leading to the call for specific safety standards. This is a challenging endeavor, however, because the patient must usually be placed in the robot's workspace and the medical staff must frequently interact with the robot. Although specific safety standards for medical robots do not yet exist, there are several medical device standards and well-established principles of risk analysis and safety design that can and should be applied. This paper presents a tutorial overview of safety design for medical robots, starting with a discussion of high-level safety requirements, followed by methods for risk assessment (or hazard analysis) and a brief discussion of some sample safety strategies.

MeSH terms

  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Equipment Design
  • Equipment Safety
  • Humans
  • Risk Assessment
  • Robotics / instrumentation*
  • Robotics / standards