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Queen's University Launches Canada's First VR Medical Training Centre

Queen's Faculty of Health SciencesHTC Vive




Collaborating with SimForHealth and HTC VIVE, Queen’s is Training the Physicians of the Future


Queen’s University has partnered with virtual reality innovators SimforHealth and HTC VIVE to build Canada’s first medical virtual reality training centre. The centre will allow medical students and residents the opportunity to gain experience caring for patients in a realistic but completely safe environment.


“There was a time when physicians performed their first procedures and did the majority of their learning on patients,” says Dr. Dan Howes, Director of the Queen’s Faculty of Health Sciences Clinical Simulation Centre. “Virtual reality offers exciting new opportunities for us to realistically simulate a wide range of clinical situations. We want learners to make all their beginner mistakes in the virtual environment, not on real patients.”


Queen’s educators will study the impact of virtual reality (VR) on learning, explore how it can be used effectively and develop educational content for future classes and curriculum.  According to Dr. Howes, “the result will be a safer, more effective medical training.”


Queen’s partners in this venture bring a wealth of experience in VR, healthcare, and education. SimforHealth is a European company focused on digital solutions for improving the training of healthcare professionals. The company developed MedicActiV, the VR software platform that the centre will use. HTC, makers of the HTC VIVE and VIVE Pro, delivers the best premium VR experience available and is one of the world’s top VR headset systems.  


Construction on the facility and VR simulation will begin this fall in the Faculty of Health Sciences Clinical Simulation Centre at Queen’s. The new space is scheduled to open in January 2019.


In the simulation case provided by SimforHealth, students will be immersed in a hospital and play the role of a physician taking care of a patient who has been admitted to the emergency room for chest pain. A video about the simulator provides a glimpse of what students will experience when using the simulation case.



Interest in using VR technology for medical education has been growing rapidly in recent years. By building the first VR Medical Training Centre in Canada, Queen’s is positioning itself at the forefront of this movement. Initially, the centre will be used primarily for undergraduate medical education. In the future Queen’s plans to use the centre in all phases of medical education, including postgraduate specialty training.


Recognizing the growing importance of immersive training in health sciences education, the medical campus at Queen’s houses 8,000 square feet of clinical simulation space.


The decision to build Canada’s first VR Medical Training Centre is just the latest example of Queen’s leadership in pursuing innovation in medical education. Last July, Queen’s became the first school in Canada to launch competency-based medical education in all of its postgraduate specialty training programs.





VIVE is a first-of-its-kind virtual reality (VR) platform, built and optimized for room-scale VR and true-to-life interactions. Built on the SteamVR platform, VIVE delivering on the promise of VR with game-changing technology and best-in-class content, VIVE has created the strongest ecosystem for VR hardware and software, bringing VR to consumers, developers and enterprises alike. The VIVE ecosystem is built around the best VR hardware in market, supported by VIVE X, a $100 million accelerator for VR and related technology start-ups, VIVPORT, a global platform and app store with the world’s first VR subscription model that operates in more than 60 countries, and VIVE Studios, its VR content development and publishing initiative. For more information on VIVE, please visit www.VIVE.com.

Press Contact : 
Rebecca Reese – PR Manager at HTC VIVE




About SimforHealth : 

SimforHealth is a leading provider of innovative digital solutions for improving the training of healthcare professionals. The company works alongside faculties, medical schools, and training organizations to design immersive and interactive solutions for medical education and medical training: serious games, virtual patients, procedural simulators,... Continuously monitoring new technologies, SimforHealth’s medical teams and simulation experts have already trained more than 40,000 healthcare professionals worldwide and are committed to the ethical principle of "Never the First Time with the Patient”. The company designed MedicActiV, an international platform to consult, create and share digital simulators. www.simforhealth.comand www.medicactiv.com

Press Contact : 
Sophie Hervé – Head of Marketing and Communication at SimforHealth
00 33 7 63 41 89 77 





About Queen’s University Faculty of Health Sciences


Located in Kingston, Ontario, the Queen’s University Faculty of Health Sciences is comprised of the Queen’s School of Medicine, the Queen’s School of Nursing, and the Queen’s School of Rehabilitation Therapy. The Faculty offers a rich array of programs that emphasize the fundamentals of the health sciences in the context of ongoing change, innovation, and discovery.


Press Contact:

Dr. Daniel Howes -- Director, Queen's Faculty of Health Sciences Clinical Simulation Centre