Medical Training using Virtual Reality


Just published in Frontiers…………..

Using virtual reality as a training tool for GPs to detect childhood safeguarding concerns


Current and immediate future work

  1. Transition to parenthood course – we have run this for 12 months. It is for any health care professional who works with new parents (midwives, health visitors, GPs, paediatricians, obstetricians, nursery nurses, audiologists, neonatal and paediatric nurses). The feedback has been exemplary. It uses two role professional role players. This is being developed into a Virtual Reality Scenario.
  2. Child Sexual Abuse Course – we have run this four times so far. It was funded by the school of paediatrics so only paediatricians have been on it. We have six different scenarios using a pair of simulation patients/clients. It is experiential as participants have to engage with young people who have been ‘sexually abused’. This could be broadened to include all number of health care professionals Again this could and should be converted to a Virtual Reality Scenario.
  3. End of life conversations (for those working on paediatric intensive care) and how to have them. This would be run with actors in the first place at Great Ormond Street Hospital but again this is to be converted into a virtual reality scenario so that eventually any professional can have access to this training at any time of the day (say to practice before a real conversation).


Below are suggestions from a workshop we were invited to run at the Royal College of General Practitioners annual meeting in October 2016.

  1. Environmental problems – fire, equipment failures
  2. Using non-professional interpreting services – a child or a husband who isn’t translating properly
  3. For use to train those who have to take a medical English language test (to consider social nuances/colloquialisms/cockney rhyming slang)
  4. Large numbers in a consultation – including warring factions such as daughter and son who disagree about elderly parent
  5. The frail elderly person with multiple sensory impairments
  6. A locked in person
  7. A child with multiple disabilities but from their perspective
  8. A patient who produces a weapon (knife/gun/bomb)
  9. Obese mother/father and adolescent
  10. Trying to have a consultation with a child/young person and getting the parent/guardian/carer out of the consultation
  11. People with genetic dysmorphic syndromes (such as Treacher-Collins, Cruzons, Achondroplaisa) having genetic counselling
  12. Support for health care professionals doing home assessments focusing on the personal safety in possible threatening/abusive situations