Virtual Reality Simulation of Mass Casualty Incident for First Responders

February 28, 2019
Image of Virtual Subway Station for Mass Casualty Incident Training

With funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH), ACCAD and the OSU Wexner Medical Center are evaluating virtual reality (VR) as a training and assessment tool for first responders charged with managing a mass casualty incident. ACCAD faculty, staff and graduate students are in the early stages of creating a VR simulation of a subway bombing. Once the VR training system is ready to go live, First Responder trainees will engage with the VR training module. Researchers will compare student performance in the virtual simulation to a current analog recreation of the event.

The goal is to demonstrate that VR will prove to be an effective training tool. The simulation could be utilized by a wide variety of trainees at universities, medical schools, and local fire, safety, and EMS departments. Creating accessible simulations to improve trainee ability and effectiveness will advance the overall goal of first responders and of improving the safe delivery of health care.

ACCAD faculty, staff and students involved with this project include: Maria Palazzi, Vita Berezina-Blackburn, Alan Price, Zach Winegardner, Alex Oliszewski, Scott Swearingen, Stacey Dunten, Tori Campbell, Sana Behnamasl.

Faculty and staff from the OSU College of Medicine spend dedicated time at ACCAD developing this project. Dr. Doug Danforth is one of the Principal Investigators, David Way is an Education Resource Specialist in Emergency medicine, Kellen Maicher is the Learning and Development Specialist who earned his MFA through Design with an emphasis in Digital Animation and Interactive Media. Early testing of the training system is commencing.