Brevard’s Hospice of St. Francis New Virtual Reality Experiences Program Helps Make Dreams Come True for Patients
Brevard County, FL — Hospice of St. Francis, a Brevard County, Florida provider of hospice, palliative care and grief support services has announced that it is one of the first healthcare providers on the East Coast to offer Virtual Reality Experiences to patients.
“Many of our patients share their feelings of sadness about having missed out on fulfilling their dreams to travel, experience aspects of nature such as seeing the Grand Canyon, doing something they’ve always wanted to do such as our Veteran patients attending an Honor Flight trip, or even about things they can no longer do like take a walk on the beach. Through our new Virtual Reality Experiences program, we can offer them the opportunity to experience those things from the comfort of their homes or wherever we are caring for them,” said Kristie Henry-Roling, MSW, Lead Bereavement Coordinator.
“Our staff is very excited about being able to enhance and enrich the lives of our patients with the Virtual Reality Experiences. We build very special relationships with our patients, their family members and caregivers. We want to do everything we can to support their quality of life, by providing excellent care, as well as happy, meaningful experiences whenever possible. Virtual Reality Experiences help make dreams come true, while improving the comfort and well-being for those we serve,” said Dr. Elizabeth Galfo, Chief Medical Officer of Hospice of St. Francis.
Hospice of St. Francis is partnering with Design Interactive, Inc. to provide the Virtual Reality Experiences and expand the scope of its patients’ experience. Sam Haddad, Augmented Reality Technical Fellow with Design Interactive, Inc. is helping guide the organization through the introduction of the new service and also through the soon-to-follow plans for expanding the program.
“Sam and his team at Design Interactive, Inc. will assist us in developing all the aspects of our program so that we can provide patients the experience of attending special events such as weddings, graduations and family reunions through the use of the technology. We believe this project is a wonderful way to fulfill our mission of uplifting lives. To be able to give our patients a chance to see or do something they have always dreamed of, and thought was beyond their reach during their lifetime due to illness is so rewarding for all of us,” said Joe Killian, President and CEO of Hospice of St. Francis.
Haddad said his team is already at work on developing the Augmented Reality aspects of the program to enhance educational options for the Hospice of St. Francis staff. “Using next-generation Augmented Reality technology, healthcare instructors can present digital content in the real world. The instructors can overlay virtual imagery using real equipment and situations. This level of augmented training greatly enhances current training beyond simple printed procedures or even videos. Trainees can now see and interact with relevant information on demand keeping their hands free to perform procedures, build muscle or mental memory which enhances knowledge retention.”
The Hospice of St. Francis Foundation is providing the seed money for the program. Dorothy Allen, Chief Philanthropy Officer of the Foundation cited the Fund the Future Inner Circle, a special group of our donors committed to innovation for establishing the fund. “The individuals who set aside these funds were forward-thinking and believed that we could use technology to add an important dimension to the patient experience. We thank them for their foresight and generosity,” said Allen.
About Hospice of St. Francis
Established in 1977, Hospice of St. Francis is Brevard County’s longest-serving and only independent not-for-profit hospice. The organization’s mission statement is: Uplifting Lives. Uplifting Each Other. Uplifting Our Community. For more than 40 years, the staff and volunteers of Hospice of St. Francis have served with passion, kindness and have consistently demonstrated a commitment to excellence. With locations at 1250-B Grumman Place in Titusville and 6905 N. Wickham Road, Suite 403 in Melbourne, Hospice of St. Francis provides the entire county with compassionate, quality care for the terminally ill, support for loved ones and resources for community members faced with end-of-life and bereavement needs throughout Brevard. For more information visit: www.HospiceOfStFrancis.com
About Design Interactive, Inc.
Design Interactive, Inc. (DII) develops and deploys augmented, virtual and mixed reality training and enterprise solutions for the transportation, medical, aerospace, manufacturing, and energy/oil/gas markets, as well the military. Design Interactive’s extensive research and development expertise in using augmented and virtual reality technologies delivers innovative solutions that keep people safe, improve efficiency, and achieve optimum performance. Founded in 1998 and based in Orlando, Florida, Design Interactive is a woman-owned business. Visit http://www.designinteractive.net