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Content archived on 2024-05-24

JUST-in-time health emergency interventions - Training of non-professionals by Virtual Reality and advanced IT tools


In health emergency care, effective and just-in-time interventions of on-the-field operators can reduce damages to injured citizens. Such damages can be severe and sometimes turn into permanent disabilities, causing high social costs. In most European countries, proper training of operators is still a critical issue. In traditional training, psychological impact of accident scenarios on operators is afforded in real-case situations without being tested in advance. JUST, therefore, addresses training of non-professional health emergency operators, by using advanced IT tools. The project R&D work aims to produce a Web/CD training course, with innovative, certified, multimedia content, as well as a VR-based verification tool.

The project's main goals are:
(1) to complement traditional courses
(2) to check operator capabilities in adopting correct decision-making procedures
(3) making optimal use of advanced IT, and
(4) in overcoming psychological barriers. Project results will be assessed in four pilot sites, set up in Italy, Greece, Spain, and France through clinical trials. Multi-linguality will, as a result, greatly enhance the European dimension of JUST's R&D work.

The JUST project addresses the domain of training of non-professional health emergency operators. It aims, through the use of advanced information technologies, certified content, and innovative VR based tools, to provide advanced support for continuous education and training, and to overcome the present weaknesses.

The specific objectives of JUST are:
(1) development of a Web/CD training course to support the traditional learning phase, based on the collection and/or creation of multimedia content of European relevance,
(2) development of a Virtual Reality Verification Tool to check operators capabilities to:
- adopt correct decision-making procedures,
- make optimal use of new technological equipment,
- overcome psychological barriers,
(3) the design and development of advanced, adaptive user interfaces for both the interactive course and the verification tool.

There is urgent need to develop new methodological frameworks to help professionals and the citizen to access information in multiple and functionally adaptive ways.

Work description:
The Project activities will be planned to take place within 7 WPs plus Project co-ordination and management. These are:
(1) Analysis of content and technology,
(2) Functional specifications and HCI design,
(3) Development of Web/CD course,
(4) Development of VR-based Verification Tool,
(5) Pilot implementation,
(6) Assessment & Evaluation, and
(7) Dissemination & Implementation.

The main target group consists of non-professional health emergency operators (i.e. mainly volunteers). Ultimately the target group for the JUST product is the European citizen. As a result, the project will pay due attention to the multi-lingual aspects and requirements. A User Group will be set up, consisting of recognised experts from traditional training course providers. Collection of European recommendations / guidelines on health emergency protocols of intervention will provide the basis for fully analysing education and training needs of the selected user groups. The target user groups will be studied in order to identify the preferred interaction patterns with different platforms. User profiles will be elicited to obtain an understanding of their requirements, skills and preferences, and interests. Context analysis will be performed seeking to obtain a global understanding f how the envisioned environment and provisioned respective systems are going to be used. Usability Context Analysis and Design space analysis will be employed to identify prime user groups, contexts of use, candidate platforms, likely scenarios of use, alternative interaction artefacts and dialogue style. An interactive multimedia medical courseware product will be developed with emphasis on interface effectiveness and adopted training and communication strategies; training objectives will not only be limited to the transfer of basic facts and rules, but with emphasis on advanced animation audiovisuals. Emphasis will be on tight integration of the Web and CD platforms, since user-friendliness.

The Project will last 3 years. The major milestones (results) will be:
- Description of state-of-the-art in health emergency training, VR-based training and Web/CD based training
- Specifications of products and scenarios (incl. HCI & localisation issues)
- Prototypes and final releases of products
- Design & results of validation at pilot sites (clinical trials)
- Assessment and evaluation reports
-A product exploitation plan.

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Participants (9)