Published on June 28, 2022
The University of North Texas Health Science Center at Fort Worth has made history with the opening of the first immersive virtual reality simulation center in Texas.
The Regional Simulation Center uses advanced immersive virtual reality technology, in addition to lifelike simulation mannequins, multifunctional spaces and more traditional virtual reality. The center’s technology can replicate virtually any healthcare scenario across multiple disciplines and can be used by both medical students who need to learn new procedures in a low-risk environment and seasoned healthcare providers looking to hone their skills or acquire new ones.
“The opening of HSC’s new Regional Simulation Center is really exciting as it will be the first immersive virtual reality simulation center in the state of Texas,” said Dr. Michael R. Williams, Chancellor of the UNT System and HSC President. “Advanced technology allows our students and caregivers to practice and learn new skills in the most realistic environments. This will ultimately benefit patients and increase patient safety.”
The $6.75 million facility is located in a renovated space on the first floor of HSC’s Gibson D. Lewis Health Science Library, 955 Montgomery St. The new center will also be open for training for hospital stay programs, emergency medical services, hospital staff, nursing home staff, clinical teams, first responders and more.
“This is an incredibly exciting day for the Health Science Center and Fort Worth,” said Michael Crain, a member of the Fort Worth City Council representing District 3. “The impressive technology here will empower both current and future generations of health professionals to learn and practice the skills they need to improve the overall quality of care in Fort Worth. This is a win for our city.”
The center is set up to deliver comprehensive healthcare simulation using techniques from multiple disciplines and adapted to the level and background of each student. The lab’s fully immersive virtual reality projection component uses advanced 360-degree cameras that allow staff to transport students in on-the-job scenarios.
“HSC’s regional simulation center will not only improve healthcare outcomes and patient safety, but this state-of-the-art facility will act as a beacon for potential medical students, technology companies and other entrepreneurs,” said Leonard Firestone, City. Council Representative for District 7, which includes the HSC campus. “The center will let entrepreneurs know that Fort Worth embraces new ideas and emerging technologies and is a leader in life sciences entrepreneurship. The economic impact of this center could be a game changer for our city as HSC strengthens its position as a leading healthcare facility.”
Photo: Councilors Alan Blaylock and Michael Crain were among the dignitaries who attended the ribbon in the lab.
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