Picture the scene. You're walking home along a busy street when in front of you, someone collapses clutching their chest. It seems they are having a heart attack and, as a trained first aider, your instincts kick in and you rush to help. However, when you reach the person, you begin to panic. Yes, you've practiced this situation before but it was in a classroom with a plastic mannequin now that you're trying the process on a real person with cars whizzing past and hysterical passers-by all trying to offer advice, you cant remember what to do.
It's a scenario that is all too common in life-saving situations, but it's one that Anna Stoilova is working hard to overcome ‚with a little help from virtual reality and LSBU's SimDH (Simulation for Digital Health) programme. Her company, Dual Good Health, has developed a training programme using a combination of virtual reality and a resuscitation dummy to teach people CPR skills in more realistic settings. Called Redo Reality, the aim is to better prepare people to put their CPR training into action in the chaos of a real-life situation.
We came up with the idea during a 24-hour hackathon (with no sleep!), but we wanted academic feedback, explains Anna. We'd already been in contact with LSBU for a while, so we knew about the launch of SimDH in advance, we attended the launch day which confirmed it was a programme we wanted to be a part of, and so we applied to join.
Innovate, Develop, Deliver
SimDH is co-funded by the European Regional Development Fund. It's a free programme supporting health tech start-ups and SMEs to innovate, develop and deliver new products and services. By combining the academic knowledge at LSBU and the real-work experience of industry partners, the programme injects a comprehensive level of knowledge and experience into exciting new projects, like Redo Reality.
"I'd recommend taking part in the programme to any start-up, as both the SimDH programme and team can provide excellent support, motivation and feedback."
As a member, Dual Good Health was able to take advantage of an initial diagnostic meeting to help LSBU understand their business needs, before a research study and a variety of workshops were developed to help develop the product further.
The experience has been a hugely positive one for Anna and Dual Good Health, who are almost ready to take Redo Reality to market thanks to the research and development they have undertaken through the programme. I'd recommend taking part in the programme to any start-up, as both the SimDH programme and team can provide excellent support, motivation and feedback, says Anna. We would love to work with LSBU in the future, either in the form of academic research partnership or running pilots of our product with LSBU students.
A research paper was published as a result of the work between LSBU and Dual Good Health - you can find it here.