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Philips XperGuide Virtual Medical Simulation


Philips Healthcare’s Cardio/Vascular division had recently developed a new interventional suite and needed to educate medical professionals on its use. Typically relying on peer-to-peer workshops with physicians, technicians, and radiologists, Philips Healthcare found their usual training methods insufficient and wanted a way to more deeply engage trainees to effectively convey the advantages of the XperCT and XperGuide systems. DDA worked with Philips Healthcare to conceive a new eLearning technology that would revolutionize how clinicians train on new medical equipment and procedures: the virtual medical simulation, a richly interactive multimedia experience that puts the trainee right into the heart of the action.


DDA custom designed and developed an original 3D clinical environment to house the virtual medical simulation. Live action video of an on-screen actress would provide an introduction to the XperGuide interventional suite, its components and features, and the eLearning itself, which would then be followed by a passive and active simulation. The passive simulation shows the trainee how to use the XperGuide step by step, while the active simulation allows the trainee to conduct the procedure in a self-directed manner, offering feedback to confirm correct processes and indicate when the trainee has made a mistake so they can learn in a realistic, yet risk-free, environment.


The XperGuide virtual medical simulation demonstrates the strength of working with a digital design and development agency with one-stop, full-service multimedia capabilities. DDA used high definition live action video shot in its own studios, voice-over narration, still photography, animation, and interactive application programming to create a virtual clinical environment in which medical professionals can learn and practice at their own pace. A multi-tiered navigation and progress bar allows the user to see all the parts of their training to track their progress and facilitate moving from different parts of the virtual medical simulation as best suits themselves. Images, text references, PDFs, and more are available throughout the training with additional information to satiate the curiosity of more advanced trainees.

Users are able to use their mouse or a touchpad to press the actual buttons used on the real life XperGuide to execute medical procedures using the interventional suite, and can ask for hints when they struggle to find the correct course of action in the active simulation. After successful completion, trainees receive a personalized certificate of completion, and can return to any part of the training program to review either the procedures or the additional supporting information. The virtual medical simulation was developed as both an online application and a native iPad app, the latter of which was especially popular among doctors. An administrative back-end reports on user registration information and performance for additional insight.


The Philips XperGuide has proven to be a breakthrough success in interactive multimedia eLearning, being named by Philips as the Best in Class iPad App of its debut year, and later giving DDA the first ever Tabby Award for Best Pharmaceutical iPad App in 2012. This success was part of the impetus behind David Katz, founder and president of DDA, writing an article in Medical Design News about the benefits of virtual medical simulation in clinical training. When the XperGuide virtual medical simulation was first deployed in a workshop of physicians from an international audience including the UK, Holland, Turkey, Germany,, and Slovenia, Philips found profound engagement with the medical training iPad app. Doctors used the entire 45 minutes set aside for using the XperGuide virtual medical simulation, and had to be prompted to move on to the next activity. Physicians enjoyed training on the app so much that others even came back to log in and use the virtual medical simulation during their break.

The XperGuide virtual medical simulation has allowed Philips Healthcare to reduce training costs while ensuring more effective training for a higher level of mastery of the XperGuide interventional suite, a revolution in their training methods. Patients, healthcare providers, and hospitals along with Philips Healthcare itself are all sure to benefit from the more engaging and effective medical training offered through virtual medical simulation design and development by DDA. Philips Healthcare would go on to create four additional virtual medical simulations with DDA, testifying to the importance in the technology and DDA’s role in ushering it into the market.

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