Enhancing Cancer Patient Treatment and Care: Ringling College Continues to Develop VR Project with Moffitt Cancer Center

Enhancing Cancer Patient Treatment and Care: Ringling College Continues to Develop VR Project with Moffitt Cancer Center

Ringling VR students and the acclaimed Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa teamed up in 2019 to develop creative content for digital healthcare technologies, including virtual reality, animations for patient education, and training videos for physicians. Patients receiving radiation treatments, for example, are now able to immerse themselves in VR and experience what the treatments will be like before they happen.

“The collaboration with Ringling College will focus on the patient journey and how we can create meaningful tools to help decrease stress, enhance understanding of upcoming treatments, and connect patients to survivor stories so they don’t feel so alone,” said Dr. Sarah Hoffe with Moffitt Cancer Center.

Joseph Janssen (pictured above), one of the students and now a senior in Ringling College’s Virtual Reality Development program, has been working with the Moffitt team to take this project even further.

This particular VR training module is primarily used for patients who are undergoing radiation therapy, where a specific area of the body is targeted for treatment. MRI, magnetic resonance imaging, is a type of scan that uses radio waves to produce detailed images of the inside of the body. The process requires the patient to remain extremely still for sometimes up to an hour.

Ringling and Moffitt have developed a virtual breathing “game” that prepares patients for the actual MRI process and teaches them how to hold still and to hold their breath. Patients choose between two themes: golf and space. The mini-games challenge the users to be still while holding their breath for 25 seconds.

“What’s great about it is that we can combine art and design to create something that’s not only functional but also visually appealing,” said Jannsen. “So then that way, it’s easily understandable to almost any viewer or user.”

You can read more about this innovative project at the media links below and learn more about Ringling College’s Virtual Reality Development program – the very first BFA of its kind at any art and design school!

Additional Media Links:

Sarasota Herald-Tribune

SRQ Magazine

Sarasota Magazine

The Cancer Letter

Dot Med Healthcare Business

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