Image Credit: Fundamental VR
FundamentalVR’s low-cost simulation education could take the medical field by storm.
For the past 150 years, surgeons across the globe have been trained in a seemingly tried and true manner. Today’s leading medical professionals honed their craft through classroom instruction, cadaver based learning, and observation–rather than participation–in the operating room.
The use of simulations in surgical education has emerged in the last decade, but the costs associated with simulation equipment have prevented the practice from becoming mainstream. By combining virtual reality with cutting edge haptics in just launched software platform Fundamental Surgery,FundamentalVR is attempting to lessen the costs and increase accessibility to hands-on, simulation education for the medical community around the world.
Each simulation combines visuals, audio, and real time touch to allow users to feel the movement of body tissue as they would in an actual surgical procedure. For advanced training, the system can be programmed to present users with randomized complications such as unexpected bleeding or a decline in the patient’s condition as they might in a real life operating room. Further, the simulation can be used for evaluation of students as it provides performance feedback on technique, procedural accuracy, and patient impact.
Though the technology sounds complex, the simulation requires only a VR headset, haptic arm devices, and a standard laptop or PC to function–eliminating the need for costly, stationery simulation equipment within medical training facilities. The software itself can be purchased at a price lower than the cost of a single cadaver.
“Our mission is to democratize surgical training by placing safe, affordable and authentic simulations within arm’s reach of every surgeon in the world,” said Richard Vincent, founder and CEO of FundamentalVR. “With the help of some of the top minds in medicine, as well some of the most advanced VR and haptic programmers, we have created a solution that can be deployed anywhere – with limited investment – to allow surgeons to learn and hone their skills over and over again in a safe and controlled environment.”