Virtual You Phoria
The power of Virtual Reality for those in need
Phoria staff capturing VR environmental content in the beautiful natural setting of Kakadu
Phoria is an immersive media company using cutting edge technology to transport people places. In 2014, we went through the University of Melbourne’s business startup accelerator, the Melbourne Accelerator Program (MAP). Although initially bringing a technology solution to the real estate industry, to promote transparency and provide a better standard of digital marketing, we quickly realised our teams’ eclectic talents and the technology we used had more potential than initially anticipated.
Through this work in the property space we had the opportunity to share an interactive, immersive Virtual Reality (VR) tour with a young girl who was unfortunately constrained to isolation at the Alfred hospital. It was incredible to see the impact this experience had on her life. Her vitals lifted, she responded better to treatment and she wasn’t able to stop telling people all about it! This was a real turning point for us; we saw the power of VR for those in need.
We are also proud to have recently been the winner of the HealthXL hackathon, giving us the opportunity to take our idea to a global stage in Switzerland next February.
So, what do we do? Initially we are using high quality VR production and head mounted display to scale already proven therapy methods. Utilising existing methods such as animal, music and green space assisted therapy in healthcare, we take these resources and make them cheaper and more accessible to patients and hospitals than ever before, giving people the chance to escape their hospital beds and experience the world outside their four walls.
Although youth oncology is where we started, plans to expand to other healthcare sectors are in motion. Rehabilitation and aged care are two areas of particular interest. In aged care, where mobility can often be an issue, we can use VR to take people on beautiful journeys around the world, to places they would never have been able to access otherwise. VR also has huge potential to help with tasks like finding the right aged care facility, by enabling families to take their loved ones through virtual tours of the properties and facilities, cutting out the need for travel and making the move more familiar and comfortable when the time comes.
This is just the beginning; VR has the potential to significantly disrupt the healthcare industry, providing immersive therapy experiences and other invaluable tools to an industry that can, at times, be quite starved of resources. Phoria looks forward to blazing this trail with the help of other industry leaders.
[Source: Joseph Purdam, Co-founder and Senior Producer at Phoria. To view their story in the news, visit http://www.huffingtonpost.com.au/2016/11/14/virtual-reality-to-take-sick-kids-far-from-their-hospital-beds/?utm_hp_ref=au-homepage ]