Enhancing Healthcare with Virtual Reality

Xia, Peng
Ruan, Ji
Parry, David
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Master of Philosophy
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Auckland University of Technology

Given the rising trend of natural and technological disasters in recent years, the demands for emergency responders are on the rise. One main challenge is how to cost-effectively train emergency responders. In this research, we aim to explore of the usage of Virtual Reality (VR) technology in an emergency healthcare training setting. We start with the following two research questions: (1) how to implement the VR technology to be used in the emergency healthcare training; and (2) how to evaluate the effectiveness of our implementation. To address the question (1), we construct emergency healthcare workflows from reference sources, convert them into process diagrams, and develop a VR software that allows users to carry out the processes a virtual environment. To address question (2), we design an experiment that collect participants’ personal data (such as Age, Technical background) and the performance data (such as timespan, avatar moving distance) generated during the training sessions. Ten participants are recruited and each performs three training sessions. We evaluate the data collected and have the following three conclusions: (a) the technical background plays the most significant role among other features in our VR-based trainings; (b) despite the different backgrounds, the participants, after repeated trainings, can gain knowledge and improve their performance with reduced timespan; and (c) native language creates a preference bias among participants.

Virtual Reality , Emergency healthcare , Training , Workflow , Quantitative research
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