Our passion at Shift Labs is building great solutions that help doctors, nurses, and other clinicians provide great care worldwide. Our colleagues around the world know this, and that’s why a group of global health specialists working with the WHO to create training curriculum for the health professionals providing care to Ebola patients reached out to us a few weeks ago for some help.
They asked if we could create some interactive simulations using game technology to supplement the didactic training materials they had developed. At the time, the US had just committed to building several Ebola Treatment Units in West Africa. And the WHO was behind a new training center in Liberia. Our first thought was “what can we build quickly to help out?” We had some initial excitement around using Kinect to get some group interaction into the mix, but that quickly got complicated by questions of hardware. Also, we knew there wouldn’t be anyone out in Monrovia to troubleshoot the tech.
So we went back to the core idea of interactive simulations, and we decided to hold a hackathon to bring together game developers, UX specialists, medical professionals, and training specialists to hack together some prototypes that show the power of games to teach.
We have copies of the WHO training protocols, architectural plans of the new DOD hospitals being built, some PPE on the way, as well as doctors from the field. Together, we’re going to dive in and see how simulations can be a part of this new training center.
Training healthcare workers with precision is imperative, and we want to help ensure that the caregivers are able to take care of themselves, too. With support from the IMAI-IMCI Alliance, Unity, Vulcan, the Bookey Group, Nordstrom, and amazing volunteers (Sue Grinious-Hill, Choong Ng, Mark Selander), we’re throwing a party (of sorts) at the Living Computer Museum in SODO this Friday through Sunday.
How much can 30 smart people build in a weekend? We’ll find out. We’re pretty confident we’ll have some inspiring examples of how engaging interactive simulations can be. Examples that can help inspire others to continue working in this area and expanding the training opportunities and materials available to health care workers everywhere.
Health care workers have been extremely hard hit during this outbreak. We’re honored to devote some of our time and resources to helping reduce their risk.
Want to join us? Space is limited, but grab a ticket at bit.ly/nixebola. We’d love to see you there!