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Technology

5 Exciting Advancements of Virtual Reality (VR) in Healthcare

SONIFI Health By SONIFI Health
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May 8, 2018

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Using today’s VR technology in the healthcare field, medical professionals bring innovative advancements into the operating room and revolutionize patient care. Virtual reality in healthcare is changing the game completely.

Here are five ways that virtual reality is revolutionizing healthcare.

  1. Patient Education

    One of the most important parts of healthcare is patient education. If a patient is diagnosed with a disease, a VR simulation can help better educate that patient on the ins and outs of the disease1, and can teach them the specifics of their treatment plan. VR in healthcare can also be used to simply educate patients on simple things like the benefits of the flu vaccine or the facts about a prescription they’ve been given.

  2. Patient Experience

    A poor patient experience can lead to low morale and even regression in recovery. VR technology is changing the patient experience for the better. With numerous options for patient entertainment, and ways to make young patients feel comfortable, less afraid, and more at home; simple VR simulations are making the hospital stay more enjoyable and less stressful.2

  3. Doctor Empathy

    For young doctors who have never been 80 years old, it can be difficult to relate to the pain of the elderly. There are virtual simulation programs available3 though, that let young doctors experience life through their elderly patient’s eyes. With a better understanding of the pain and frustrations of their patients, doctors who use VR can be more empathetic and understanding.

  4. Training

    Training doctors on complex procedures can be done through VR technology.4 Resident surgeons can watch complex procedures through the eyes of experienced physicians by using a VR headset. Classroom learning can also be enhanced with VR simulations2 and educational visuals that take medical students well beyond a textbook.

  5. Treatment

    Treating certain ailments like stress, PTSD or anxiety can be aided by the use of VR technology.5 Physical therapy can also be enhanced through VR, especially for amputees4 who experience phantom pains frequently. By using specially created technology, amputees can interact with their lost limb through VR simulation, and essentially work with the phantom pain in a visual way.

With its numerous benefits and uses, it’s no wonder that VR is taking the healthcare industry by storm. From patient care and education to doctor training, by implementing this beneficial technology into healthcare, both doctors and patients benefit.

References
  1. O’Dowd, E. (2018, April 27). Healthcare Virtual Reality Enhances Clinician, Patient Satisfaction. From HIT Infrastructure: https://hitinfrastructure.com/news/healthcare-virtual-reality-enhances-clinician-patient-satisfaction
  2. Ford, O. (2018, February 12). How one top hospital is using Virtual Reality. From Medical Device and Diagnostic Industry: https://www.mddionline.com/vr-becoming-commonplace-healthcare
  3. 5 ways medical Virtual Reality is already changing Healthcare. (n.d.). From Medical Futurist: http://medicalfuturist.com/5-ways-medical-vr-is-changing-healthcare/
  4. Goyal, N. (2017, November 7). 4 growing verticals for VR and AR in the healthcare industry. From Quora: https://www.quora.com/In-your-opinion-what-could-be-the-best-use-for-VR-and-AR-in-medicine-in-the-near-future-whether-remotely-or-onsite/answer/Nitin-Goyal-MD
  5. Samit, J. (2017, October 24). Fortune. From Virtual Reality Is Healing Healthcare in America: http://fortune.com/2017/10/24/virtual-reality-healthcare-america/


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