Who We Are
Virtu-Well's team is comprised of Certified Recreation Therapy Specialists and technology experts who share a passion for helping others and a futuristic mindset. In conjunction with Nursing home owners, licensed nursing home administrators, and healthcare marketers, our team has developed an all-encompassing therapeutic virtual reality program with the short term rehabilitation and long term care population in mind.
When we first discovered VR, our first instinct was to come up with a way to introduce it to populations that would otherwise not be exposed to it. Though our first exposure to the technology was with rudimentary "viewers" that used cell phones, we immediately saw how creating an illusion of a certain environment could evoke powerful responses.
Our research led us to conduct countless experiments with many major VR systems with the goal of finding one that would be the right fit. We soon learned that there were major differences between basic viewers and high-end machines. Our eventual decision to solely use the latter was based on a few important factors:
- Quality- As our trials have shown, the communities we serve are a discerning bunch by and large. If the experience is unimpressive, they tend to tell us, which is why we only use technology that is high-end. Our systems operate using custom-built gaming PCs, assembled with the intensive requirements of VR as their main purpose. In conjunction with our policy to only offer high-quality content, the quality of our equipment ensures the absolute best experience
- Comfort- If our initial trials have taught us one thing, it is that comfort is key. If the technology is not comfortable to use, the user will not be willing to participate no matter how impressive the experience is. We have made important modifications to the equipment we use including a weight management and distribution system, custom faceguards to relieve pressure and increase FOV, as well as lightweight, wireless headphones to maximize immersion.
- Control- The few times we have encountered VR in the skilled setting we saw a few reoccurring issues. Firstly, the setup was a barrier to most. Even when an individual would receive hands-on instruction, they would lose patience and eventually give up. If they would get to the point of use, finding high-quality content would prove to be too difficult, and because of the devices being used, there would be a limit to how immersive the experience could be, thereby a limit on its benefits. The same issues would arise, and fumbling would ensue. Again and again, we would see the benefits go unnoticed. Our technology allows us to be in full control behind the scenes while a user enjoys an impactful experience of their choosing. Our approach eliminates the burden placed on the individual by making it simple. Users may either choose from the hundreds of experiences in our collection book or tell us a little bit about themselves and leave it in our hands.
Our goal was to be able to provide a way for individuals who have limitations placed on them by age, physical, and/or cognitive barriers to experience the magic of VR just like we did. We felt that many who had seen or heard about VR technology were not open to experiencing it because it was not presented in a way that would resonate with them. Even if it was, it was not made accessible.
At VIRTU-WELL, we believe that high-quality Virtual Reality can be much more than a mere novelty. Instead, it can be a tool that shares a goal with many traditional recreation therapy programs currently available: to improve quality of life.
The Future of VIRTU-WELL
Our experiences working in the skilled care environment have given us a unique perspective when it comes to viewing the needs of the individual as a whole.
Though VIRTU-WELL is currently geared towards using VR to make improvements in the realm of therapeutic recreation, our team is passionate about uncovering the amazing potential of the technology in other existing health care fields as well. Revolutionary capabilities such as tracked-motion controllers, room-scale positional tracking, and flawless graphics rendering are highly impressive features of the systems we use and make for entertaining programs, but we believe the potential is far greater.
From Physical Therapy applications to advanced memory care programs, our vision for the future is to create the quintessential therapy program that not only engages the user but results in active improvements to the user’s physical and mental wellbeing.
As more and more advancements are made within the VR ecosystem, we strive to be at the forefront, harnessing the technology and incorporating it into our person-centered approach.