How new Apple headset could give physicians 'superpowers'

A Maine surgeon says the new Apple mixed reality headset could give physicians "superpowers," while Apple executives envision healthcare as a key use area for the new device.

The Apple VisionPro, the company's first major project launch in years, is set to be released Feb. 2. Its deployment for surgeries has long been rumored.

"Oftentimes, surgeons struggle to look at displays during procedures, where information is spread out," said Mike Rockwell, vice president in charge of the device, in a video sent to employees reported on Jan. 18 by Bloomberg. "Apple Vision Pro could bring all of that together and hopefully improve patient outcomes."

Some health systems and physicians are already excited about the device's potential. "The possibilities are exponential for what the Vision Pro could optimize and streamline," Bangor, Maine, surgeon Rafael Grossmann, MD, wrote Jan. 21 on X. "The ability to tap the power of AI, large language models and large action models, along with speech and image recognition to assist and take charge of EHR documentation, alleviating the burden posed by these tasks to our overworked nurses and physicians."

Dr. Grossmann, the first surgeon to livestream a surgery via the Google Glass headset, previously told WMTW that generative AI melded with Apple's new device could give healthcare providers "superpowers to be the human healers that we need to be."

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