A Whole New World: Discussing AR/VR Technology in Healthcare

We will examine the possible design opportunities and dangers of AR/VR technology in healthcare, and close by sharing some of the driving forces that informed these opportunities

A Whole New World

Applying Design

Near-Term (12 Months)

  • Positive Effect from Precision: Top-notch education and precision focused on AR/VR technology within the medical setting can trickle down and positively affect surgery, health outcomes, and recoveries, lead to reduced costs
  • Education for all: The education does not only stop with the physicians and surgeons, but can reach the patients, as they become more active in their treatments and understand the intricacies of their surgeries with displayed AR and VR
  • Invest in time: Time is crucial in designing an effective platform using AR/VR technology in order to convey and promote the information, education, and efficacy successfully

Dangers

  • AR/VR Hype: AR/VR technology is an exciting innovative tool that can help augment the healthcare system, yet it is relatively new idea that is still finding its footing in being a consistent asset
  • Many factors for success: Need plenty of money, resources, and trust from investors to produce, manufacture, and deliver these AR/VR technologies
  • Assets of healthcare institutions: The same level of money, resources, and trust is necessary from physicians and healthcare administrators, which might be only possible for well-designed and well-funded facilities to attain

Long-Term (3+ Years)

  • Changing medical training: Both current and future surgeons will cultivate their skills through the help of well-designed AR/VR platforms, as medical schools, hospitals, and other clinical settings can facilitate their institutions with this technology and provide a more immersive educational experience
  • Informed and engaged patients: Patients will become more informed and knowledgeable about their upcoming surgeries with a visual representation that AR/VR offers, which can, in turn, improve their relationship with their physicians
  • Encouraging easy collaboration: Communication and consultations — both in-person and virtual — between medical teams will also improve with effective AR/VR technology, making their interactions more seamless

Dangers

  • Mistrust and skepticism: Poorly designed models can stimulate skepticism and mistrust from physicians and surgeons in regards to the technology’s precision and efficiency
  • Lack of sustainability: Designers must create AR/VR technology that lasts for the long-run, from longer battery power for 10+ hour surgeries to general durability and reliability
  • Financial loss: The cost of supplying AR/VR technology into clinical settings is much greater than its benefits of reducing health costs if companies do not maintain trust in their product and plan an effective and cost-efficient business model

Driving Forces

X-Ray Vision

Virtual Rehabilitation

This company has expanded into other industries, including sports and video gaming with their platforms MindDrive and Mask, respectively. While MindDrive is a biosensing net that captures drivers’ and pit crews’ neural signatures in real-time during a race, Mask is an improved VR-headset that will bring emotional cues into VR through the measurement of electrical signals and detection of users’ biosignals, rather than muscular movements.

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Photo by UNIBOA on Unsplash

Mapping Homes

Virtual Reality and Inclusivity

“Together with Asos, we have a shared mission to make online fashion as personalised and easy-to-use as possible for customers. With our patented, artificial intelligence-based AR technology powering See My Fit, we can connect the dots between what you see when shopping and what you receive at home, giving customers more confidence in purchasing the products they love.” ~Yael Vizel, Zeekit Chief Executive

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