Virtual reality (VR) has become an innovative medical training tool, particularly for surgical procedures. There are several reasons why VR is an effective training method for surgery.
- First, VR allows for a high level of realism and immersion, which can be particularly helpful for training. Trainees can practice procedures in a realistic, simulated environment, providing a more accurate real-life scenario representation than traditional methods such as textbooks or lectures.
- Second, virtual immersive training allows for levels of repetition and practice that are not possible with live patients. Trainees can practice procedures multiple times without putting actual patients at risk, which can help them gain confidence and skills.
- Third, VR allows for a level of customization and personalization in training. Trainees can practice specific procedures or techniques they may be struggling with and can do so at their own pace.
Overall, VR provides a safe and effective way for trainees to practice and improve their surgical skills before performing procedures on real patients.
AdventHealth is a great example: a nonprofit healthcare system in Florida with 80K employees, 45 hospitals in 9 states, 73 other facilities, and 4.7M patients served last year alone. Under Todd Larson’s (Director of Simulation & Innovative Technologies at AdventHealth) guidance, and in partnership with Strivr, AdventHealth implemented its first Immersive Learning pilot about three years ago. The learning organization uses VR as a way to reproduce and scale its most effective training in a consistent way across the entire hospital system, teaching life-saving skills without putting real patients at risk.
The topic of the pilot Immersive Learning effort was safe procedural sedation across three units: the cardiac cath lab, the interventional radiology suite, and emergency departments. During the discovery phase, Larson’s team talked to educators throughout the organization to examine how and where VR would work best.
What they discovered was that trainers were doing things differently across these three areas of the business, even though, when it comes to procedural sedation, there’s a national standard of practice. The lack of consistency in training methodology was creating inconsistent outcomes. This knowledge-gathering helped Larson’s team create a pilot with specific program objectives around staff and patient outcomes.
The goal: Consistent training at scale
Five headsets were distributed at each of 400 hospitals throughout the Orlando area, with a test pool of both new and experienced RNs. Immersive learning modules were created using existing materials and knowledge, and the outcome was not just strong but quantifiable:
- 84% of RNs who went through the Immersive Learning training felt more prepared after doing it
- 88% felt more confident in assessing patient condition
- 87% felt more confident in administering medication incrementally
There were even more awesome success metrics, and Larson boasts, “These were off-the-chart numbers we didn’t really expect. Now we have a long line of people who want to do VR training.”
Post-pilot, AdventHealth plans to leverage Strivr’s Immersive Learning solution, so it’s consistent across locations and departments and as an annual competency measure for nurses year over year.
These were off-the-chart numbers we didn’t really expect. Now we have a long line of people who want to do VR training.Todd Larson – AdventHealth