VR, COVID and ensuring safety with cutting-edge tech

Not too long ago virtual reality (VR) tech might have seemed like a dream, but now it’s being harnessed by the healthcare industry for a wide variety of purposes, and during COVID-19 has helped educate physicians when real-world training isn’t feasible

Commercial VR is still a relatively fresh prospect, but already the pharma and healthcare industries have caught onto the hype and are exploring the myriad ways this tech could be used to improve patient outcomes.

That’s not to say VR is widespread in the sector – far from it – but the readiness to adopt such a new technology from even big pharma firms is somewhat surprising considering how conservative the industry has been in the past.

Novartis, for example, has used the tech to help researchers improve the molecular makeup of a drug, by allowing them to view these structures at a larger size and in a more “natural” 3D view. Similarly, Pfizer is using the technology to allow researchers to visualise and virtually explore the human body at a molecular level. One recent study even explored how VR could be used to analyse drug candidates that target the main protease of the SARS-CoV-2 virus behind COVID-19.

• Read the full article in pharmaphorum’s Deep Dive digital magazine