The NHS England diabetes team has partnered with virtual reality medical training company Oxford Medical Simulation to train doctors in a bid to improve care for patients with diabetes in the real world.
The training will allow doctors to practice in virtual reality medical emergencies.
Dr Partha Kar, NHS England clinical director of diabetes said: “Embracing technology is at the heart of the NHS Long Term Plan and training doctors using virtual reality is another example of modernising the NHS to help improve care for patients with diabetes.”
Combining clinical expertise from the NHS, volunteer patient input and world leading virtual reality software, doctors can now put on virtual reality headsets and practice taking care of patients as often as they want, without risking lives.
The system is being piloted through Health Education England in a multicentre trial in the South of England, with development funded by Novo Nordisk. If supported by evidence from the pilot there are plans for further roll-outs nationwide throughout 2019.
Dr Jack Pottle, an NHS clinical entrepreneur and co-founder of Oxford Medical Simulation, said: “When I was in training we’d learn on the wards. It was called ‘see one, do one, teach one. I had never practiced managing a diabetic emergency until I had to do it in real life. You wouldn’t expect a pilot to fly a plane full of passengers without having practiced first. Why do we think that’s acceptable for doctors and nurses?”