Institution profile by Mikkel Swindt, DokkX, Aarhus, Denmark
Where is your exhibition and development center located?
DokkX is Aarhus Municipalities’ innovative development center for welfare technologies and digital healthcare solutions. DokkX are located at Dokk1, a public citizen service center in Aarhus. DokkX brings together different groups and individuals to form an innovative environment combining user feedback with product development. These groups include companies, startups, health care providers and citizens.
What patient populations do you serve? How many per year?
DokkX serves citizens, educational and research organizations, municipality employees and companies. Besides being open for the public 4 days a week, the DokkX team also arranges and hosts several other activities. Our goal is to provide experiences with and spread knowledge about new welfare technologies and solutions.
The purpose of DokkX is to:
Demystify, make visible and normalize welfare technology
Inspire developers, engineers, students, designers, and architects to develop new welfare technology
Give citizens advice and guidance so that they can acquire the right technologies and aids
Inform decision-makers, employees, and students within healthcare about the latest knowledge
Each month we receive approximately 1.100 visitors and run three different exhibitions each year.
What VR rehab systems do you have installed?
At DokkX, we have several different VR solutions which are available for care and rehabilitation purposes:
- Khora Care (Samsung Gear)
- VR Snoezelen (Google Daydream)
- VR-Rehab (HTC VIVE)
- Gonio VR (HTC VIVE)
Besides these, we also display other VR-experiences and games, which are not created for rehabilitation purposes.
Every visitor can try the solutions within the exhibition and the staff can explain their purpose and practical use.
What benefits do you gain from using these VR rehab systems?
We experience a growing interest in VR and its use within healthcare and rehabilitation. Many of our visitors come to learn more about VR and experience it themselves. Most of the healthcare professionals and rehabilitation specialists who try VR are positive and agree that VR holds a large potential for creating meaningful and motivating rehabilitation exercises. Many health professions appreciate the opportunities for tracking their patients’ progress and creating environments and challenges, which fit the individual patient. Based on experience with the previously mentioned systems, we can also see that VR, as a tool, can be used in various rehabilitation settings and not just within physical rehabilitation. These include rehabilitation of anxiety disorders and cognitive abilities.
What problems did/do you have with using VR rehab systems? If, so please describe briefly.
Although we experience huge interest from healthcare professionals, VR is still not widely implemented in the Danish rehabilitation practice. Through dialog with health care professionals in the exhibition, we have noted several factors which until now have limited the implementation of VR.
- VR rehabilitation systems differ a lot from standard rehabilitation technologies. Consequently, clinicians need to alter their approach and adopt VR into their rehabilitation setting.
- There are still a few fully developed solutions for VR rehabilitation. Therefore, the use of these solutions still comprises limitations regarding usability.
- Many VR systems need to be more intuitive to ensure more therapists can use it without prior specialized education.
(Original article source: ISVR Newsletter Issue 16)