February 12, 2023

The Medical Metaverse Monthly Digest

Metaverse person

The “nextmakers” of EVERSANA INTOUCH know the medical metaverse is changing everything, whether you’re a patient, a provider, a caregiver — or a brand marketer. We scour the world for the latest on the metaverse in healthcare, and update you regularly on what you need to know.  

Can the metaverse help you donate blood? 

Abbott Unveils “Mixed Reality” Experience for Blood Donors as it Looks to Boost Younger People’s Awareness (FiercePharma.com) – Abbott and the Blood Centers of America have developed a mixed-reality experience that gives a blood donor the opportunity to interact with a calming natural setting while they give blood (while still enabling the individual to remain fully aware of their real-life surroundings, and enabling healthcare professionals to fully monitor the individual.)

Can the metaverse detect and treat diseases?

The Arrival of the Metaverse in Neurorehabilitation: Fact, Fake, or Vision? (NIH.gov) Researchers from several institutions in Italy discuss possible ways that metaverse experiences can help to boost cognition, learning, social, and emotional abilities; help to work with motor recovery in combination with exoskeleton devices; work with telemedicine; and more.  

Source: Calabro, et al in Biomedicines 

Researchers Use Virtual Reality Games to Detect ADHD Symptoms in Children (InterestingEngineering.com) – A team from Aalto University, the University of Helsinki, and Ko Akademi University created a VR game that notices abnormal eye movements in children playing a simulator game. They posit that it might be used not only to assess ADHD symptoms, but also to aid with treatment, as well as to help with autism, brain trauma, cerebral palsy, and age-related memory issues.   

Study: New VR Sensory Room Reduces Anxiety in People with Intellectual Disability (MobiHealthNews.com) – Nature Scientific Reports published a study from a team comprising members from Western Sydney University, University of Wollongong, The Disability Trust, and tech company Devika, in which their VR program helped improve symptoms of anxiety and depression, as well as sensory processing, in adults with a variety of developmental disabilities.  

Can the metaverse educate healthcare professionals? 

Maine college one of the first to teach nursing using VR patient simulations (WCPO.com) – The simulated patients can talk, tell students what medicines they’re taking, and run a fever. An assistant nursing professor says it’s giving students a “head start” in taking care of real patients. 

What can medical marketers learn from a french-fry distributor? 

McCain’s Marketing SVP Talks Potato Farming on Roblox Livetopia (AdWeek) – “We’re trying to transform the farming community … we’re trying to transform the environment.” Sure, this statement comes from a frozen french-fry brand, but couldn’t you replace “farming” with “medical” and have it be equally inspiring? Large healthcare players, including pharma, could similarly build the future of their industries on Roblox or other virtual worlds.  

If you didn’t go to CES, you missed some very cool hardware. 

I’ve Seen the Future of AR Glasses at CES 2023 – and It’s Amazing (Forbes.com) and Apple’s Mixed-Reality Headset to Launch This Spring: Report (Decrypt.co) –  As the technology that “lets you in” to the metaverse continues to proliferate and improve, the retail price continues to be a large barrier. $3,000 glasses are unlikely to become very popular very quickly; you can assume that professional, rather than individual, settings will continue to be the main adopters of high-end headsets and glasses. 

Curious how we’re helping clients at EVERSANA INTOUCH wade into the medical metaverse? From AR educational experiences, to VR MOA projects, to virtual speaker events, to digital therapeutics, we guide our clients every day toward what’s next. Want an educational presentation to help your team get up to speed? Talk to your account team!

Contributors: Paris Daniell, Ben Gauthier, Jeff Greene, Jeff MacFarland, Nicole Maksimovic, Sarah Morgan