Introducing Virtual Reality in a STEMI Coronary Syndrome Course: Qualitative Evaluation with Nurses and Doctors
Authors: Forgiarini, A., Deroma, L., Buttussi, F., Zangrando, N., Licata, S., Valent, F., Chittaro, L., Di Chiara, A.
Published in: Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, in press, 2024.
Abstract: In the increasing number of medical education topics taught with virtual reality (VR), the pre-hospital management of ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) had not been considered. This paper proposes an implemented VR system for STEMI training and introduces it in an institutional course addressed to emergency nurses and case manager doctors. The system comprises three different applications to respectively allow i) the course instructor to control the conditions of the virtual patient, ii) the case manager to communicate with the nurse in the virtual field and receive from him/her the patient’s parameters and electrocardiogram, iii) the nurse to interact with the patient in the immersive VR scenario. We enrolled 17 course participants to collect their perceptions and opinions through a semi-structured interview. The thematic analysis showed the system was appreciated (n=17) and described as engaging (n=4), challenging (n=5), useful to improve self-confidence (n=4), innovative (n=5), and promising for training courses (n=10). Realism was also appreciated (n=13), although with some drawbacks (e.g., oversimplification; n=5). Overall, participants described the course as an opportunity to share opinions (n=8) and highlight issues (n=4) and found it useful for novices (n=5) and, as a refresh, for experienced personnel (n=6). Some participants suggested improvements in the scenarios’ type (n=5) and variability (n=5). Although most participants did not report usage difficulties with the VR system (n=13), many described the need to get familiar with it (n=13) and the specific gestures it requires (n=10). Three suffered from cybersickness.