Whole-Grayston-thesis.pdf (28.74 MB)
An augmented reality simulated sterile environment for Aseptic Technique Training
thesisposted on 2023-05-27, 12:10 authored by Grayston, TI
Hospital Acquired Infections (HAIs) are a leading cause of death worldwide. In the United States, the death toll from HAIs exceeds that of AIDS, breast cancer, and motor vehicle accidents combined, totalling nearly 100,000 deaths annually. The correct application of aseptic technique by healthcare professionals is critical to the reduction of HAIs. However, the intricacies of maintaining a sterile field can be difficult for students to grasp due to the invisible nature of pathogens. Traditional teaching methods provide limited opportunity for students to receive feedback on their technique from qualified staff. Clinical settings also afford minimal feedback due to the delay between breaches of asepsis and occurrence of infection. This research presents a novel approach to aseptic technique training that utilises Augmented Reality (AR) technology to simulate a sterile environment. A prototype system, ARSterileSim, was developed based on the findings of a pre-liminary exploratory study. ARSterileSim tracks the movements of a user as they attempt a basic wound dressing procedure, providing feedback via colour-¬¨‚â†‚ÄövÑv™coding on a virtual mirror and auditory cues. The system makes the invisible visible, alerting the user when contamination occurs thereby completing the feedback loop. Face and content validity of the ARSterileSim prototype was assessed via a mixed methods triangulation study involving interviews with ten experts in aseptic technique training, from both academic and clinical backgrounds. Results indicate that while the prototype's markers and tracking accuracy require improvement, the approach in general has face validity. The findings also provide evidence of content validity within the defined scope of the proto-¬¨‚â†type, which excluded hand tracking. Participants placed particular value on the visual and auditory real-¬¨‚â†time feedback, as well as the fact that learning takes place in a tangible context, enabling strong transfer of learning to clinical practice. Further work in this area is therefore recommended.
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