Today’s most innovative hologram technology is now being used in the academic setting to provide unique healthcare simulation education experiences. This Fall, the University of Central Florida (UCF) will be providing learners with the opportunity to experience holograms in the classroom for the first time. The very lifelike live action holograms are specifically designed to help healthcare learners better understand patient safetyand overall care. This realistic hologram experience is made possible by employing a piece of equipment called PORTL.
“When I saw the use of PORTL in the entertainment industry, I immediately thought of how it could be used to engage our students by seeing and learning from a variety of patients with different pathologies and varying symptom profiles. It had all the components there – the life-sized high-definition image, the ability to interact in real-time – we were inspired to make the technology work to meet our needs in training contemporary, and compassionate healthcare providers,” Said Bari Hoffman, Ph.D. Associate Dean of Clinical Affairs at the UCF College of Health Professions and Sciences.
She added that UCF plans to use this in a variety of classes, at the undergraduate and graduate level. This includes a broad spectrum of health science majors, and a variety of rehabilitation disciplines, including physical therapy, speech-language pathology and clinical social work.
PORTL is a device that allows users to “beam themselves to a location thousands of miles away” and interact with the people there through telepresence, or “holoportation.” Founded by David Nussbaum in Los Angeles in 2019, the technology allows the user to upload and schedule live and pre-recorded content which can then be streamed anywhere in the world.
“Because I learned of the technology during the pandemic, I immediately saw how [virtual technologies] could be a stopgap for the challenges that we were facing during that time in bringing patients to class and so forth,” said Hoffman. “But I quickly started to see how this was going to remain beneficial for our students even after COVID-19. It really opens the doors for our students to engage with the greatest variety of patients, without having all the hardships of access that we typically face in bringing volunteers (especially those who are medically fragile, have mobility impairment or immunocompromised) to class.”
Through a partnership with Dr. Hologram, a telepresence healthcare technology company, PORTL is able to extend to UCF a way to depict high-fidelity simulation scenarios involving virtual patients. This modernization to the university’s education system is expected to positively impact both organizations and the communities they support by strengthening future provider competencies.
“Dr. Hologram offers technology that provides the playing of real life experiences with patients (and other healthcare content) without the high cost and burden of recruiting volunteers when running astandardized patient program,” said James Beckmann, CEO at Dr. Hologram. “The content can be utilized on demand with virtually an unlimited number of simulation modules making the system both transformative while giving back a favorable ROI to our client partners.”
The university’s goal is to create a patient case library of conditions for learners to explore and ultimately increase their experience, confidence and skill in treating live patients. Another goal is that, by exposing learners to rare and subtle patient conditions, they will be better equipped to identify instances of these conditions in the future.
“You don’t know what you don’t know. When students see a patient with a unique symptom profile, or rare diagnosis, the student becomes more familiar and confident in their ability to help future patients by getting them to a quicker diagnosis, connecting them to the care they need, and ultimately a better quality of life,” said Hoffman.
She added that UCF is already seeing better learner engagement with the content and a more comprehensive understanding of the impact the condition has across the whole body. The resource is helping to prepare the learners with a broader perspective of lived experiences, from both the patient and caregiver, and helping them develop soft skills and a humanistic approach to care.
Source: Healthy Simulation