Hospital staff and students are utilizing virtual reality (VR) technology to enhance their ability to identify symptoms of sepsis, a potentially life-threatening condition. The initiative, a collaboration between doctors at the Great Western Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and the training platform Goggleminds, employs immersive headsets to create realistic training scenarios simulating the treatment of sepsis patients.

Sepsis occurs when the immune system reacts excessively to an infection, causing harm to the body’s tissues and organs. Dr. Ron Daniels, founder of the UK Sepsis Trust, emphasized the challenge of identifying sepsis in a pressured healthcare environment, noting that early detection is crucial in preventing the 48,000 annual deaths attributed to the condition.

The VR technology aims to facilitate more flexible and efficient training for healthcare professionals, enabling them to learn outside traditional settings and in smaller groups. The initiative draws on research from the University of Bath, focusing on how VR can engage healthcare students in experiential learning.

Professor Richard Joiner from the University’s Department of Psychology highlighted the significance of quick and effective responses to sepsis and anaphylaxis, emphasizing the potential life-and-death impact of frontline medical teams’ actions. The VR simulation provides a safe and realistic environment for doctors to gain practical experience without putting actual patients at risk.

Article written by Bea Swallow



BBC News