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Clinical Virtual Reality: Seven Ways that Virtual Reality Will Change the World of Mental Healthcare
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TimeSunday, 13 December 202010:00 - 11:00 SGT
LocationMain Room
DescriptionVirtual reality (VR) has undergone a transition in the past 25 years that has taken it from the realm of expensive toy and into that of functional technology. Revolutionary advances in the underlying VR enabling technologies have supported development resulting in more powerful, low-cost VR systems. Such advances in technological “prowess” and accessibility have provided the hardware platforms needed for the conduct of human clinical treatment and research within more usable, useful, and lower cost VR systems. Significant scientific literature has also evolved regarding the outcomes from the use of what we now refer to as Clinical Virtual Reality (VR). This use of VR simulation technology has produced encouraging results when applied to address cognitive, psychological, motor, and functional impairments across a wide range of clinical health conditions.

This presentation will focus on seven ways that Clinical VR has already, and will continue to change the world of Mental Healthcare. After a short introduction of Clinical VR, Skip will cover the theory, research, and application of VR systems that help to overcome fear, recover from traumatic experiences, experience less pain, rehabilitate motor function, exercise and relax, test and train cognitive function, and benefit from virtual human interaction. The clinical health conditions that benefit from these applications include patients with Anxiety Disorders, Depression, PTSD, Acute/Chronic Pain, TBI, Autism, ADHD, Alzheimer’s disease, stroke, social skill challenges, and other clinical conditions. In each application area, Skip will present the trajectory of Clinical VR over the last 25 years and address the question of whether Clinical VR is ready for Primetime.

This will focus on the question of readiness regarding the theoretical basis for Clinical VR applications, the scientific research to date, and the pragmatic factors regarding availability, usability, and costs of Clinical VR content/systems. Skip will delve into future trends that are expected to continue to will grow in relevance and popularity in the near future as the technology continues to evolve.