How Health Care Can Benefit From Gamification
With the popularity of smartphone technology, it's possible for people to download a number of games that focus on making them healthier. There are games that can help people adhere to their exercise regimen, decrease their weight, manage a chronic illness and more. There are a number of games created by health insurance companies and a number of technology companies. For instance, people can use their smartphones to track everything from their blood sugar to calories burned. These games offer their players various types of rewards. Industry insiders consider it the enterprise gamification of health care.
The results of a study published by iHealthbeat.org illustrated that physicians are increasingly having success with using online video games as their primary learning tool. It has enabled them to have better outcomes when compared to physicians who only utilize the traditional learning method of reading educational materials. The games that provided the most success had an online trivia format. Physicians playing the games knew their scores and were competing with other physicians. The physicians using online games to learn required less time to learn necessary information.
There are technology companies that are using common game platforms such as Jeopardy and Trivial Pursuit to help patients manage their chronic illnesses. These games have been especially useful in helping individuals with diabetes. Individuals who played the game showed a significant increase in their ability to manage their diabetes. They found the games relaxing and enjoyable.
One of the challenges physical therapists encounter are patients who refuse to comply with unsupervised exercise programs. Gamification has provided a tool that is cost effective and helps motivate patients to do their exercises when not being supervised by their physical therapist. Using a cloud-based dashboard, a patient's exercises routine can be determined. The games are designed to be both fun and personalized. There are 3D sensors that can be used to monitor a patient's performance (virtual reality is also being used). The patient can also get immediate feedback. Any potential problems can be quickly detected by the physical therapist. The results have shown a significant increase in patient compliance with home-based exercise routines.
Improved surgical skills
A study was conducted at Beth Israel Hospital in New York. It examined the connection between surgeons who played video games against those who did not. The study revealed that surgeons who regularly played video games were significantly better at performing laparoscopic surgery, as well as other surgical procedures. Another study was performed at VA Boston health care system in Massachusetts. Surgical procedures were introduced to residents using a gamification simulator. The training lasted for 14 weeks. The residents participated in 28 training exercises for approximately three hours each. The participants showed an increased level of success with the surgical training when compared to other residents not part of the study.
Nutrition and weight loss programs have tried many different methods to help their clients succeed. Some methods have been more successful than others. Gamification has provided a cost effective option that is able to be designed to meet a client's individual needs. The games can be made to focus on helping people maintain their motivation and persist when they reach a target weight. The games that are the most successful provide immediate feedback, show a person's progress and require an activity. Gamification provides a good method for a person to track their weight loss progress. They can even create the option to compare their success against others in a particular group.
Active engagement from patients can help improve their health care. Gamification has provided the health care industry numerous benefits by engaging patients, providing feedback and tracking overall improvement.
Brigg Patten writes about business and technology.