WASHINGTON, D.C.—The irony of virtual reality is that it’s better tested hands-on. Timothy Koboldt, MD, FACEP, simulation director for the emergency medicine residency at the University of Missouri, learned that firsthand as he toured innovatED wearing augmented-reality devices that he could potentially use to train his residents back home.
“I spend all this time doing all these very complicated cases and all this prep work,” Dr. Koboldt said. “And then I just drop them in [a video] game scenario and they’re like, ‘Oh yeah, that’s one of the best things we’ve done.’ So if I can have something that can keep their interest … and recreate patient-based experiences, it would be great. “I’ve spent most of the time in here looking at the new technology coming out,” he said. “It’s great to see the future.”
ACEP’s annual meeting is, first and foremost, a scientific assembly. But for this year’s attendees, the lure of networking, the Wellness Center, innovatED, and a warehouse-sized Exhibit Hall is a really close second.
Alon Dagan, MD, an attending emergency physician at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, was a presenter of mHealth Toolbox, which bills itself as an interactive workshop for providers interested in health technology innovation. Dr. Dagan’s session at innovatED sought to pair physicians with mobile technology to discuss how devices should work for emergency physicians.
“We’re all very adept at making do with limited resources,” Dr. Dagan adds. “Talk to any emergency physician and they’ll have some tip or trick of how they take the nasal-cannula oxygen to dry the Dermabond. Everyone has these tricks of the trade … as physicians, it’s our responsibility to identify problems and then go to the engineers and say, ‘Hey, I’ve got this problem. Can you help me solve it?’ That’s what this is.”For Carissa Tyo, MD, the problem to be solved is that emergency physicians spend so much time caring for patients, they forget to focus on their own well-being. She said so as she stretched out on an exercise ball at the Wellness Center, while people around her participated in “I EM Well” story booth for physicians to tell success stories. “The message is absolutely invaluable,” said Dr. Tyo, of University of Illinois-Chicago. “We as docs don’t do a good job of taking care of ourselves … to an unfortunate extent, we don’t promote that enough within our specialty.”