Physicians today are more stressed and burnt out than ever before. And with a looming shortage of nearly 122,000 physicians expected by the year 2032, many are feeling the pressure of their profession as the time in their day continues to be packed with patient appointments, administrative tasks and continued education requirements. But, thanks to advances in technology, brands are finding new approaches to train and educate physicians – bringing a bit of fun into their everyday work. At the helm of these new experiences are immersive technology such as virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) based applications and on-the-go devices.
These new tools provide a digital workspace for physicians to practice complex surgeries, better empathize with patients and train themselves on how to react and improve their care in certain situations. In one study with second-year medical students, it was found that a VR-based platform led to an average of 30 percent more students reporting that they had a better understanding of aging patients. In another, researchers found a 230 percent improvement in overall surgical performance when participants were prepared with VR training.
With results like those, it’s undeniable the role immersive technology will play in healthcare. In fact, the market for such technology is expected to grow to $6.91 billion by 2026. That’s why brands like OSSO VR, one of the leaders in health-based VR technology, are preparing to expand their offerings across a wider range of therapeutic areas.
Founded in 2016, OSSO VR was on a mission to provide surgeons with on-demand information through the use of VR headsets and similar tools that allowed them to best assess how to handle certain surgical procedures. The success of its product gained the company a spot on Time’s best inventions of 2019 list and the program is now used to train more than a thousand physicians across the globe.
“If there was a way, kind of like in the Matrix where you just plug in for five or 10 minutes and refresh yourself or get up to speed and then assess and make sure you’re ready to go, that would be a total game changer and have a massive impact on patients and the health care system as a whole, all thanks to video game technology,” Justin Barad, founder of OSSO VR, told The Washington Post.
As technology continues to advance, expect health-based immersive tech to evolve as well. For instance, we may start to see VR and AR incorporated with hand-tracking gloves to improve motor skills and accuracy. Or instructions displayed live during surgeries to provide in-room assistance. But, with all of the new emerging possibilities, one thing’s for sure: immersive tech will be a leader in how brands engage and interact with physicians in the future.