October 9, 2023
7 minute read

Empowering Healthcare Training: Changing the Way We Learn

AUSCEP's Nathan Moore leads Learnsuite Health by Frameless Interactive, a cutting-edge healthcare training suite leveraging VR and AI to combat staff burnout with immersive asynchronous learning.
Empowering Healthcare Training: Changing the Way  We Learn
Written by
Published on
December 18, 2023

The healthcare workforce are under increasing pressure to do more with less time. By leveraging immersive asynchronous approaches, users can partake in educational activities which are more engaging and allow for deeper levels of learning than are possible with traditional e-Learning approaches.

Words by Nathan Moore:

Our company, Frameless Interactive, has developed Learnsuite Health—an interconnected suite of multimodal healthcare training applications that leverage cutting-edge technologies, including Virtual Reality, Artificial Intelligence, and flatscreen simulation. This allows learners to better prepare for face-to-face training and practice these skills between training events in the time and place of their choosing to minimize knowledge degradation. The applications have been adopted in numerous local health districts, university courses, and private industry.

The Conversational Trainer is a new AI-powered application that uses Synthetic humans to provide an immersive, realistic, and educational experience. Each character imitates human behaviour in multiple scenarios.

We've forged impactful partnerships that significantly contribute to our success. Collaborating with Western Sydney Local Health District and The University of Sydney in ongoing research has not only exposed us to valuable feedback but also gained traction with clinicians and students. Our partnership with Zoll Medical has been instrumental in exploring the commercialization impacts of digital twins in this space. Personally, the AUSCEP program has been indispensable, providing guidance, contacts, a supportive community, and the confidence needed to take the leap as a co-founder of a startup.

Our resulting innovation supports areas of regularly identified demand including, Advanced Life Support, Deteriorating patients, Verbal De-escalation skills, Clinical Communication, Mindfulness and Wellbeing and more.

AUSCEP Fireside Chat

Nathan, can you briefly introduce yourself and your clinical background?

I am a Registered Nurse and was in the public sector for around 20 years. I started my career in Intensive Care and progressed through a number of clinical and educational roles including Simulation Nurse Educator, Lead for Digital Innovation and most recently Chief Nursing Information Officer. I have a Masters of Education and have almost completed a Phd exploring the design and deployment considerations for the use of Virtual Reality in Clinical Education. I am a Certified Health Informatician Australasia (CHIA) and a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Digital Health and was recently appointed to the Executive Board of the Australian Society for Simulation in Healthcare (ASSH).

What was the catalyst moment to start your innovation?

I was working as the Simulation Nurse Educator in WSLHD and delivering a lot of ALS training. We would bring together large groups of highly skilled clinicians for collaborative high fidelity simulation training. When we went into the debrief events I was ready to talk about the crucial non-technical aspects of the groups performance and the bulk of our time ended up being spent discussing basic algorithmic information which is all part of the pre-work. It made me think there had to be a better way to allow staff to prepare and rehearse this basic algorithmic content prior to their attendance at the programs. It was in response to this that we developed our first application ALS-SimVR which allows a user to direct a virtual team in the management of a patient in a cardiac arrest on a standalone device in the time and place of their choosing.

What was something unexpected you learnt along the way?

That great ideas for solutions are only part of the puzzle. The practical considerations of how you get the idea out there are equally, if not more important. Who will actually pay for this? AI driven conversational agents are great but they need a reliable internet connection. How do you safely use and process a VR headset during a pandemic (we co-authored the state guidelines for the cleaning and disinfection of head mounted displays in response to this one).  How do you deploy bulk headsets when there isn’t a robust vendor ecosystem for the hardware? We've had to overcome a number of these challenges over a few years but have no doubt our business and our product are stronger for these challenges.

What do you believe are the most critical healthcare challenges today, and how can programs like this help address them?

I think one of the most critical challenges we have today is staff burn out and the time pressures placed on our workforce. For too long technologies and solutions have been thrust upon our workforce with little to no consideration on the impact to the workflow of the end users.

We are trying to support the healthcare workforce by providing them flexible, engaging educational approaches addressing the challenges they face by leveraging “The right tool in the right place” not just providing solutions looking for problems (which may or may not actually exist).

How do you envision the future of healthcare?

I believe the future of healthcare will hopefully be focused on prevention rather than cure. I believe we will have technology being a co-pilot for our workforce making their lives easier by offloading administrative burden allowing for more direct face to face care time with the patients.

What skills or knowledge have you gained through the program that directly impacted your innovation?

There was so much I gained from the AUSCEP program which impacted on our innovation. Some standouts include identifying the payer and how best to target decision makers as well as end users. The connections I gained through the program also help us really refine our business model which really benefited our strategy.

One of the biggest benefits for me however was spending time with a group of like minded individuals and the surrounding community.

It was the support and encouragement from this group of peers and advisors which gave me the confidence to step out of my “safe” public sector role and really pursue this opportunity.

Share a key moment or experience from the program that influenced your approach to healthcare innovation.

Whilst there were many I think the most memorable key moment for me didn’t impact the innovation itself but how we marketed it when the AUSCEP leaders asked the question “who is buying your innovation”. This completely flipped how we approached marketing and our conversations.

Any advice for clinicians interested in healthcare entrepreneurship?

Start talking with people, the entrepreneurship community is very welcoming and supportive. There are so many lessons learnt out there that people will be willing to share but view it all through the lens of your own journey, value and goals.

If you are in the public system, find your champions and supporters.

Whilst there are challenges to be overcome I genuinely believe the system wants to improve and there are opportunities to start this at a local level with an “intrapreneurship” lens without leaving your system.

What's next for your journey as a clinical entrepreneur?

We are currently looking at expanding our reach through distribution partners as well as developing additional content to broaden our applicability to our end users to increase our value proposition to organisations. We are also leveraging our modular development approach through Frameless Interactive to support other verticals outside of healthcare.

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