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VA is Conducting Research on Augmented Reality Prospects

AR can prove beneficial for enhancing the quality of advanced patient care

The Department of Veterans Affairs is exploring the potential uses of augmented reality (AR)  technology within the agency.

During an ATARC Government Symposium panel discussion, VA Senior Advisor Marc Wine stated that combining VA practises with AR technology can enhance patient care.

According to Wine, the advent of high-speed 5G connectivity will facilitate fresh developments in healthcare services and AR-based healthcare training. Many federal government organisations continue to contribute to the mission of augmented reality development. Both the armed forces and defence bodies are putting all efforts in for discovering new mobile technology use cases.

Frank Konieczny, CTO, Air Force, revealed that the organisation is currently working to install 5G across its bases. He remarked that the latest mobile technology developments are facilitating the improvement of IT capabilities for the branch.

Konieczny stressed that the activities being performed were a mission-level exercise for the Air Force.

Our technical strides were in line with the core purpose of the Air Force, which is ensuring that American warplanes are maintained optimally. The introduction of 5G technology has been instrumental for recording information regarding the technical capabilities and shortcomings of Air Force warplanes and relaying such information to engineers and field technicians. – Frank Konieczy

According to Wine, innovations powered by 5G that are being exercised at VA possess telemedicine capabilities. The organisation has expressed significant interest in utilising 5G for AR technology development. It has been testing out AR solutions geared towards supporting triage and field medicine. 5G-driven technical advances such as this one can prove quite useful for improving the results of sensitive on-field medical procedures.

Wine cited an effective test case that involved a complicated surgical procedure. The medical specialist was based in North Carolina during the test, whilst the physician being instructed was somewhere in the Middle East. According to Wine, AR as a technology form is capable of facilitating an advanced level of remote technical assistance and information accessibility that was not possible through other avenues.

VA healthcare innovations have been made possible through public-private partnerships, with Wine specifically mentioning Underwriters Labs. He further elaborated on the subject of collaboration’s importance, stating that the VA has been able to put in sincere efforts towards the testing and verification of AR and telehealth capability safety. The collaboration helped in the evaluation of device trustworthiness within the VA networks. Wine expressed that with the prevalence of advanced 5G-enabled systems and technical hurdles, maintaining optimal network-wide security has become quite important.

56-driven tech has shown satisfactory results in the aspect of improving psychiatric recovery. Therapists and technicians at VA have been exploring how this technology can improve treatment procedures for PTSD, by enabling war veterans to explore the origins of their trauma symptoms. AR can be utilised to help veterans enter a controlled environment, where they can go back to the memories of traumatic events.

Wine emphasised that 5G-enabled AR is quite suitable for enhancing many VA health care aspects.

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