UCC professor wins prestigious award for pioneering virtual reality research

UCC professor wins prestigious award for pioneering virtual reality research
Pictured (left to right) is Prof. Richard M Satava, Prof. Tony G Gallagher and Dr Carla M Pugh.

A UCC professor has been presented with the Satava award, one of the most prestigious in the area of advanced technologies in medicine.

Dr Anthony Gallagher, Professor and Director of Research at the ASSERT Centre, College of Medicine and Health, in UCC, got the accolade at the Medicine Meets Virtual Reality (MMVR) conference in Los Angeles, California.

Dr Gallagher has pioneered research on the application of virtual reality (VR) in minimally invasive and image surgery, and endovascular interventions.

His research has demonstrated the power of VR as a training and assessment tool, with VR-trained surgeons performing operations 30% faster and with six times fewer mistakes compared to conventionally trained surgeons.

Using VR and simulation as a training tool is one of the most significant changes in surgical and medical training in the last 100 years.

Dr Gallagher said: "VR was always going to work. All I did was combine the technology with robust clinical science. The results were even better than any of us could have imagined.

"Our research has shown that VR isn’t just as good as conventional training, it is orders of magnitude better. We can produce better trained surgeons and clinicians with no risk to patients."

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