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Over 30,000 experience an out of hospital cardiac arrest in Australia each year

90% of people who suffer from cardiac arrest die

How Does Virtual Reality Benefit Healthcare?

Western Sydney’s Australian-first program using virtual reality (VR) puts doctors and nurses into rare yet critical scenarios where every second counts as they direct a multi-disciplinary team attempting to save a patient in cardiac arrest.

Such high-stakes encounters are less common thanks to advancements in modern healthcare and earlier identification of deterioration in patients, meaning doctors and nurses need additional training to keep their skills up to scratch.

The application uses a custom-built, state-of-the-art VR program to create an immersive and lifelike training experience, with the advantage that clinicians don’t need to be on site to use the portable technology. This means, clinicians are able to practice crucial skills in their own time in a location of their choosing. Randomised elements such as heart rhythm, blood results and ECG rhythms to improve replay ability encourage the user to make decisions which are recorded for review and performance is tracked on the web based dashboard.

What We Need

Traditionally simulation has been used to prepare staff to respond in specific situations. Whilst it is still a powerful and effective tool, it does have limitations such as fixed locations and times as well as high staffing requirements.

VR is a powerful tool which could effectively supplement existing educational processes and make the face to space time spent more valuable.

In order to further progress the application, additional funding is required for programming and application development. Hardware, such as headsets allow for full deployment.

"This application has the potential to significantly improve the way we train and assess ALS team leaders. Being able to faciliate both individual and collaborative experiences really adds to its benefits"

Richard Conway, Clinical Nurse Consultant, Clinical Emergency Response System

"I think this is a really cool thing. I think it would complement the simulation training where you've got a lot of staff resources. You could potentially reinforce new learning without much supervision and the feedback is generated automtically in the program"

Dr Andrew Coggins, Staff Specialist, Emergency

"I am of the generation that rarely uses this stuff, I am also of a generation that doesn't play computer games, at all, ever. But that was good! What I can see that this is good at, is making sure team leaders are getting sequences right."

Dr Ken Harrison, Senior Staff Specialist, Anaesthetics

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