Staff can ‘walk in shoes of patients’ with new virtual reality training

Moorfields Eye Hospital hopes developing the bespoke virtual reality training will improve the patient experience.

Matt Bodell
22 February 2020
Moorfields Eye Hospital

They are creating virtual reality scenarios that demonstrate good and bad practice.

Moorfields Eye Hospital is developing bespoke virtual reality training to improve patient experience, with input from real patients about their experiences at Moorfields.


Staff and patient volunteers are currently undertaking workshops to create virtual reality scenarios that demonstrate good and bad practice in waiting rooms, in the operating theatre and when breaking bad news. The training is being designed to give staff an even better understanding of their patients’ needs, from a patient’s point of view

The scripted virtual reality films will be captured using a 360˚ camera mounted on a mannequin. Staff will then be able to view the films using a virtual reality headset.

Sarah Needham, deputy director of nursing at Moorfields Eye Hospital said: “For the first time, we have the ability to walk in our patients’ shoes and learn from their lived experience.

“Drawing on the skills and knowledge of our staff and patients, virtual reality ‘REELS’ (Reality Enhanced Experiential Learning Scenarios) are the perfect tool for us to recreate real life experiences in a way that was previously impossible with traditional training methods.


“Working with Flix Films, who have extensive experience of developing healthcare education packages in virtual reality, is enabling us to further improve the excellent care we provide for our patients with sight loss.

“The scenarios we are developing will show a waiting room experience, a theatre procedure and breaking bad news. Each scenario will reflect good and poor practice and allow the user to feel what it is like to utilise our services with sight loss.

“We’re really excited to be using immersive technology to improve staff and student engagement whilst giving them more confidence and a deeper understanding of our patients’ needs”.

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