When it comes to maintaining a vivarium, performing regular cage checks is essential to ensure the health and wellbeing of the animals. Traditionally, these checks have been conducted using paper forms, which are time-consuming and prone to errors. However, with the advancement of technology, digital lab assistants have become a game-changer in the vivarium.
To see the LabVoice digital assistant being used in a vivarium, check out this video:
One of the most significant benefits of performing vivarium cage checks with a digital lab assistant is the improvement in data quality. Paper forms can be difficult to read and prone to human error, which can lead to inaccurate data being collected. If the paper records need to be copied into an electronic system, then technicians are forced to spend more time at a computer, rather than focusing on the animals.
Digital assistants provide a more streamlined and accurate way of collecting data. Data collected by the technician is automatically saved to study management software (e.g., RockStep Solutions’ Climb), spreadsheets, or ELNs, making it easier to analyze and monitor trends.
Another advantage of using a digital lab assistant for cage checks is that it is faster than using paper forms. With a digital lab assistant, you can quickly dictate observations and move on to the next cage, reducing the amount of time spent on data entry. This increased efficiency allows technicians to spend more of their time on other tasks. We have seen upwards of 50% reduction in time performing cage checks when moving to digital lab assistants.
Using a digital lab assistant can also reduce the risk of contamination. In a vivarium, cross-contamination between cages and from outside sources is a significant concern. By using a digital lab assistant, you can minimize the amount of equipment and materials that need to be brought into the vivarium and near cages, reducing the likelihood of contamination.
Additionally, study and colony management software, can be accessed remotely, allowing researchers to get information from these systems without physically leaving the vivarium or having to walk over to a computer.
In conclusion, using a digital voice assistant for vivarium cage checks has numerous benefits, including improved data quality, increased efficiency, reduced contamination risk, and remote access to data. As the technology continues to evolve, it is likely that we will see more applications of digital voice assistants in the vivarium, ultimately leading to improved animal welfare and scientific research.