How virtual reality is transforming medical training

In today’s rapidly changing healthcare system, med students require advanced skills training to practice medicine and serve their patients well. New innovations are increasingly being introduced into hospitals, clinics and other types of healthcare centres across the nation. Virtual reality (VR) is an example of an emerging technology that has the potential to revolutionize medical school training programs in Calgary and the rest of Canada.

Let’s look at three ways VR is changing the game for future healthcare specialists: 

  1. Offers an immersive experience 
    Forget about invasive cameras and cumbersome medical imaging devices! Thanks to a pair of high-tech VR goggles, med students can get a close-up look at the body’s nervous system, cardiovascular system, muscles, tissues and bones. Residents at Stanford University, for example, can peak inside a beating heart to study congenital heart defects. VR offers a truly immersive look at the human anatomy that traditional textbooks just cannot provide.
  2. Provides real-world practice
    Imagine scrubbing in on a very realistic surgery without actually stepping foot into a real operating room. One of the greatest advantages of virtual reality is that it allows students to experience tense, real-life encounters via high-tech simulations long before they enter real clinical settings. This early exposer helps prepare students for everyday scenarios that require rapid thinking and quick analysis for effective patient care. Furthermore, VR is an innovative way to learn techniques and witness best practices first-hand, without crowding hospitals or other clinical settings. 
  3. Helps develop empathy
    In addition to providing advanced technical training, VR can also help students better prepare for delicate interactions with patients and their families. How so? Well, VR has the potential to let future physicians and other healthcare professionals personally experience their patients’ symptoms by putting on a headset and seeing what it’s like to be someone with high-frequency hearing loss, for example. By getting a feel for the limitations of certain debilitating conditions, students are more inclined to understand their patients’ suffering and provide compassionate care. 

While many questions remain as to how VR will benefit the future of medicine, there’s no denying that it can help train students to provide the highest quality of care. Consequently, many medical schools in Calgary are looking to include the latest technologies in simulation medicine in their curriculums.

As one of the city’s best vocational schools offering a dynamic range of healthcare programs, Alberta Business & Educational Services (ABES) is committed to providing the highest quality of instruction. As such, we’ve partnered with organizations like Alberta Health Services and other accredited groups to ensure our programs reflect current industry requirements. 

If you’re interested in pursuing an exciting career in the health services industry in Calgary, speak with an adviser at ABES today! Our school offers hands-on medical training programs designed to provide students with the skills, resources and opportunities they need to enter today’s workforce.