Using virtual reality to train medical professionals

Gaining first hand experience of different clinical environments is an essential part of any medical training. But these settings can be fast paced and stressful and often have restricted access – finding high quality opportunities for students to experience these environments is a challenge.

We have developed a learning resource (in partnership with a virtual reality-based training organisation), to help students understand the practices and processes of a histopathology team. Histopathology is the diagnosis and study of diseases by examining tissues and cells under a microscope. Students are able to explore a busy, working histopathology laboratory in an immersive, virtual reality environment and follow a tissue sample from surgical removal to end point diagnosis and reporting.

These training opportunities do not replace real clinical experience, but they can enrich students’ knowledge so they are better equipped to gain maximum value from their work placements. Immersive technologies provide access to clinical areas which undergraduates do not normally experience. Our team is now extending these training techniques and our educational expertise into accelerating learning in other sectors and supporting government and businesses in delivering training. 

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