In the latest episode of Impetus Digital‘s Fireside Chat, I sit down with Mike Waldron, who is the CEO and Co-Founder of Propel VR. We discuss how virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) can be leveraged in the healthcare industry, including specific applications of VR/AR for healthcare providers and patients. Among many other things, we also explore the barriers to using VR/AR, the impact of COVID-19 on VR uptake, and what the future holds for this technology.
Here is a sneak peek of our conversation:
Q: What are your current plans and what are the aspirations of Propel VR in healthcare?
A: Safety is our focus for now. We definitely are interested in other types of training. When you’re trying to do what Propel VR is trying to do, you have to look at the strengths of the technology. Where is VR better than other mediums, where does it really shine and add a lot of value? In terms of safety, I think there’s a lot of immersion. You can induce a lot of stressing factors like outside noise, movement, distractions in the virtual environment, which you can’t get in a video, that really make it more realistic and give some people muscle memory to help trigger the proper response in the real situation. So that’s why it’s strong for safety.
But there’s a whole other sphere, I would say, that’s come up quite quickly – “soft skills” is kind of how I frame these types of trainers and it’s really more about interacting with humans and getting a very human connection with someone who may be at the other end of a virtual reality headset as well, maybe someone at the end of a laptop who may actually be a non-player character who you’re interacting with, but can be quite expressive. There’s a technical demo that’s out there called “Firing Barry” and it’s made for training managers on how to approach difficult conversations with employees. It’s a very effective tool for conveying how hard those things can be without actually having to put someone in that situation. So that’s another area that we’re interested in. I think the safety was just our focus because of the common ground between nuclear and healthcare and it allowed that pivot…
For more of our discussion, you can watch the whole Fireside Chat with Mike Waldron, or listen to the podcast version, below.
Check out the resources mentioned in this Fireside Chat:
- Propel VR Demo
- Propel Hand Tracking Demo
- Propel AR Demo
- AR Education Application
- VR Soft Skills Trainer “Firing Barry”
About Impetus Digital
Impetus Digital is the spark behind sustained healthcare stakeholder communication, collaboration, education, and insight synthesis. Our best-in-class technology and professional services ensure that life science organizations around the world can easily and cost-effectively grow and prosper—from brand or idea discovery to development, commercialization, execution, and beyond—in collaboration with colleagues, customers, healthcare providers, payers, and patients.