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News The project story

Safe learning with a patient surgeon

Imagine standing in an operation theatre and handing instruments to a surgeon. To nursing students, the impression can be nerve-wracking and may cause them to choose another area of specialization.

To guarantee that the future is not lacking nurses with competence to work in this demanding field, Turku University of Applied Sciences has created a virtual 360° game that supports the students’ skills in identifying surgical instruments.

Nursing students testing the VR instrument game.

The game gives the students a boost in their competence and showcases the reality of working in an operating theatre.

“When turning my head, I saw the very realistic environment. I believe this game lowers the threshold to work in an operating theatre,” says Jasmine Pitkänen.

Pitkänen, a soon-to-be-graduate nursing student. Along with her classmates, she gave an estimation of the learning experience. With a bit more practice on the game, Jasmine would be ready to jump on the deep end.

Learning by doing was a rewarding method for the students. Instead of reading books or watching videos and learning passively, the students appreciated active practicing and experiencing the lifelike situation. Or like Mikko Kinnunen put it:

The experience was concrete, authentic and very realistic. I improved my score after rehearsing just once. When you practice, you learn.”

The students appreciated that, unlike books and videos, the game indicated incorrect answers. This feature along with the possibility to retry were seen as big bonuses from the learning point of view.

“If I handed a wrong instrument, it was made clear, and I got a chance to try again,” said Riikka Mörsky.

Instead of having the instruments explained as a list in a book, the game showed all the instruments at one glance. When reading about the topic, it did not occur to her, how the situation would look like in a real setting.

“If I had played this game at the beginning of my studies, I might have chosen to practice in an operating theatre.”

Valtteri Hannila appreciated the safe learning experience. Despite handing a wrong instrument several times, the surgeon stayed calm, and the rehearsal continued. In the real-life, a surgeon might not be as understanding. Playing in front of others added, however, more stress to the situation.

During their nursing studies, the students had played a learning game before, but this was the first VR learning game experience. Based on their practicing on the Instrument game, both the students’ experiences and attitudes towards the learning method were positive.

See video and interviews of the students testing the instrument game.

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Company cooperation across borders – because of the 360ViSi project

That led to a demo with the Norwegian University of Stavanger and based on their recommendation, the Finnish project team from Turku University of Applied Sciences was keen to hear more about the company and its products.

ONsim offers its customers VR headsets and easy-to-use 360° training solutions mainly to the medical sector whereas Turku UAS is, as a part of the 360ViSi project, both creating new methods for nursing education and developing the 360ViSI Editor enabling practically anyone to create simulations from 360° videos.

With a mutual passion for VR and simulation, the meeting between ONsim and Turku UAS was a sparkling start to the cooperation. Both ONsim and Turku UAS teams are enthusiastic about developing not only their products but also each other’s ideas. With cross-fertilization in mind, both the project and the company are looking forward to future cooperation.

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News The project story

Zero surgical failures



Petteri Joenpolvi, CEO of company ADESANTE, a start-up established out of the 360ViSi partner ADE, presented extended reality (XR) which is a new technology covering virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR) and mixed reality (MR).

“Every year 310 million patients are going through surgical procedures, and 50 million of them are experiencing some kind of complications. In the US, for example, 4000 people are injured every year due to surgical failures, of which 33 % experience permanent injury and 7 % wrongful death,” he explains.

ADESANTE has developed XR solutions for viewing medical images, planning surgical procedures, training surgeons and medical students and support surgery.

The XR solution is used by University hospitals and General hospitals. It’s easy to operate and gives you a precise overview of the human anatomy. It’s perfect for planning a surgical procedure and give the surgeons a better understanding of how to avoid surgical failures.

“Through ADE, the 360ViSi project will benefit from the expertise also from ADESANTE”, says the project manager Atle Løkken.

 Petteri Joenpolvi’s presentation, is available on YouTube.

https://www.surgeryvision.com/

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News The project story

The instrument game

During nursing studies, there is rarely enough time to practice enough the needed skills to make students feel competent and confident. When entering an operating room, students often feel particularly nervous. As a working environment, it is strict and disciplined, that adds anxiety especially when the practicing time in busy teaching premises is limited due to, for example, spatial resources.

Learning by selecting

As a part of 360ViSi project, Turku University of Applied Sciences’ Turku Game Lab together with Nursing studies, have started to solve the problem by creating an education game placed in an operating room.

When playing, the student first sees a 360° demo video of surgery. In front of the student, one of the nurses is handing instruments to the surgeon according to his requests.

When starting the actual game, the student sees the surgeon and the selection of instruments. The task is to, according to the instructions, select and hand over the correct one. The key to the learning is the immediate feedback to the choices the student makes. In the end, the player sees the scores, the time used per instrument and the number of correct and wrong answers are shown.

Unlike during simulations or internships, the game gives the student a possibility to rehearse countless times. This leads to strengthened self-confidence and supporting his or her learning. Once the student gets to practice, he or she can concentrate on the aspects going beyond the basics.

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The project story

Using VR and 3D to explain the COVID-19 effect

As a nurse and university senior lecturer, the Head of the E-learning and New Technologies department (SENT) at The Catholic University of Valencia “San Vicente Mártir” (UCV), Dr. David Fernández, has explained to his students, through virtual reality (VR), aspects concerning COVID-19.

Dr. Fernández has answered all the questions received by participants on his twitter account @enferdocente. He has visually explained the structure of the virus, how it spreads, and how it reproduces within our organism until it reaches the alveoli in the respiratory system.

“The problem with coronavirus is that it has a high affinity for the ACE-2 receptors that are found in the membranes of lung cells,” he says.

According to Dr. Fernández, VR offers specific benefits:   

“It allows the use of three-dimensional objects so students can see, experience and understand in a graphic way what is being explained. Moreover, it facilitates independent learning and it ingrates different teaching methodologies, like escape rooms, through which students can play and learn at the same time.”

UCV is a partner university of the 360ViSi Erasmus+ project team and cooperates in this particular case with a Spanish immersive tech expert company, Innoarea, to increase the understanding of the COVID-19 and how the virus affects lung cells. Innoarea have organised a virtual environment, Innorooms, a collaborative VR tool, whereDr. Fernández has visually explained the structure of the virus, how it spreads, and how it reproduces within our organism until it reaches the alveoli in the respiratory system.

The collaborative VR-tool allows several people to meet in the same virtual space, and which is particularly oriented to teaching and education. It offers the possibility to share experiences and knowledge with others, regardless of where they are, that way, students and lecturers are able to communicate through avatars if it is not feasible to do it physically. The meeting was followed on streaming on YouTube.

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News The project story

VR simulations in a psychiatric clinic



The 360ViSi team from the University of Stavanger were invited to test a VR- solution for medic training.