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Philips Healthcare HeartNavigator Medical Device eLearning Simulation


Philips Healthcare had just developed a new interventional suite the HeartNavigator, which creates a single image from multiple 3D CT images and overlays that image on top of live X-ray fluoroscopy to assist in cardiac procedures. To support release to the market, Philips Healthcare tapped DDA to develop a virtual medical simulation to effectively train the clinicians who would operate the new interventional suite. Replacing in-person, peer-to-peer workshops, user guides, and PowerPoint presentations, DDA Medical’s virtual medical simulations provided custom-designed and developed interactive eLearning that was uniquely engaging and rewarding, helping to ensure the most effective training possible.


As this was the third in the series of virtual medical simulations DDA custom designed and developed for Philips Healthcare, there were already many digital assets that could be capitalized upon in the creation of the new HeartNavigator virtual medical simulation. However, the HeartNav requires additional procedural steps to be taken from a control room, so a new virtual clinical environment was developed from scratch to support this new interactive eLearning tool. The fluoroscopy needle image guidance system was also a particularly new feature, and would demand the integration of real clinical images into the HeartNav virtual medical simulation.


DDA designed new lab and control room environments with a sleek, futuristic aesthetic, populated with a model of Philips’ medical equipment, a 3D patient model, and ambient lighting that indicated the transitions between the different parts of the virtual medical simulation. DDA cast the live-action spokesperson introducing the HeartNav VMS from its own Actors’ Network of professional talent, and shot all video in its own studios on green screen to integrate the final actor video within context of the simulated clinical environment of the virtual medical simulation. The passive and active simulations include voice-over narration to guide the trainee, which were also recorded in DDA’s own sound studio. The medical equipment was animated where needed to show the procedure, and controls were programmed to respond interactively to the trainee during the active simulation testing the user’s understanding of the use of the HeartNavigator.

Through the combination of 3D models, photography, integrated video, animation, interactive programming, and voice-over narration, DDA created a comprehensive interactive medical eLearning tool that effectively trains clinicians on the use of the new Philips HeartNavigator. Closed captioning was also integrated to assist those with hearing difficulties or who did not want to rely on sound during the training, and users are tested on their knowledge with a series of multiple choice questions at the end. Upon achievement of a passing score, users are awarded with a dated and personalized certificate of achievement to record their participation. A back-end administrative area was also developed to collect user registration information and report on usage and performance.


In just the first few months of the release of the Philips HeartNavigator virtual medical simulation, over 200 U.S. and international physicians registered and took the course, with numbers continuing to grow thereafter. It has continued to garner high praise from customers and others, showing that custom interactive medical eLearning design that lies at the heart of DDA’s unique approach to virtual medical simulation is a powerful way to train clinicians on medical equipment and procedures.

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