Vitalise-Project / INTRAS VR/AR Environment and Snoezelen Room

INTRAS VR/AR Environment and Snoezelen Room

About MINDLab (coordinated by INTRAS Foundation)

Overview
  • Year of Establishment: 2012
  • INTRAS Foundation
  • Valladolid, Spain
  • Governance: INTRAS Foundation
  • Type of Living Lab
    • Urban & Rural Living Lab (Rural areas)
    • Living Lab as a service (Government)
    • Living testbed (Technology testing, Tech transfer)
Online Presence
Challenges
  • Improve social-health care and facilitate independent living of older people and people in a situation of autonomy loss through co-creating innovative solutions;
  • Foster the regional development, looking for greater sustainability and cost-effectiveness of care provision.
Partnerships
  • ENoLL
  • OPEN DEI Healthcare Cluster, Aligning Reference Architectures, Open Platforms and Large-Scale Pilots in Digitising European Industry
  • MIND Consortium (https://designingfordementia.eu/) joined to promote mindful co-design and co-production as a beneficial and effective tool to improve mental health and wellbeing
  • MOAI Labs (Transnational European lab dedicated to multidisciplinary research, development and social innovation focused on Collective Intelligence and Social Health Technology Labs to fight isolation and loneliness) https://www.moailabs.eu/en
  • Cluster SIVI (Innovative Solutions for Independent Living)
  • Regional Administrations (local health network and social services)
  • EIPonAHA (3* Ref. Site), Integr@tención, a cross-border innovation ecosystem initiative to generate competitive advantages and regional social impact through innovative solutions for health and wellbeing promotion
Goals & Vision

It is specialized in co-design, co-development, assessment & validation of technological products and services, mainly for people suffering from mental health disorders, older adults and people with disabilities, paying close attention to ecological validity.

Committed with quality Open and Responsible R&I, implementing value driven participation in co-creation and co-design methodologies focused, involving users as co-designers and co-researchers.

Of greater value is the focus on experience-led design for value co-creation, constituting stakeholder’s networks and Groups of Experts by Experience for requirements elicitation and co-design in initiatives oriented towards social and healthcare transformation.

Co-creation activities pillared on principles of cognitive accessibility, equity, empowerment and ethical and meaningful participation of users and other stakeholders. By co-creating alongside with the users, valuing their non-formal knowledge, is a powerful mean to ensure good levels of usability and acceptance, adoption, perception of usefulness.

One of its strategical efforts is on collecting evidences regarding the participatory and co-creative methodologies and better understand the own process of participation in innovation, facilitating the uptake by other relevant players. It requires a continuous work understanding what means a win-win relationship with participants, what is the expected value (e.g. support autonomy, dignity, independence), bearing in mind ethical concerns (e.g. secure, accessible, unobtrusive, dignifying, decision-making respectful/ supporting user to hold locus of control).

Services currently offered by the infrastructure:

  • Among the LL services there is the promotion of participatory actions during projects lifecycle, welfare circuits supported by IT & showcase, studies centred on proof of concept of IT and services, LL testing, trials, management and Exchange with innovation groups (regional, national, European and international: research groups, innovation actions).
  • Among the main achievements are the constitution and consolidation of the first dedicated GEE (Group of Experts by Experience) in the region, transfer of co-creation and GEE’s practice to LL’s connected to the Integr@tención network, the creation of a Transnational Impact Hub for Independent Living and Wellbeing that also implements an acceleration program of products or services close to the market and earned recognition by EIP on AHA (3 stars’ reference site).
  • In 2019 were accounted 17 scientific publications and participation in European Conferences and AHA dedicated networks; 28 involved entities (businesses, universities, Living Labs); more than 20 researchers from internal and external research groups focusing on Active and Health Ageing.
  • Since its establishment, over 1800 users have participated in research activities of the INTRAS living environment and has supported the implementation of various research projects on AHA and independent living.
Operations

Previous Projects:

  • Neurologic VR: Neuro-motor training through VR/AR intervention approach integrating neurofeedback and mindfulness techniques
  • Snoezelen VR: Interactive Platform for Multisensory Therapies in the Neurorehabilitation field. Includes deep immersion allied with multisensorial and multi-therapy intervention in virtual environments, including virtual reality glasses, optical gloves and leap motion technology.

Running/Ongoing Projects:

  • Gradior Suite: incremental development of the different intervention programs/technologies
  • ApoyaTEC:  experimentation of technologies to create an internal catalog of available technologies and support tools available, which provides information on each one of them with the guidance of professionals with experience in handling solutions, both for the selection of the appropriate tool and for their application.

Infrastructure

Value: VR rehabilitation scenarios simulating, in a controlled and safe environment, activity rooms based on a multi-sensorial stimulation approach, training executive function

INTRAS VR/AR Environment and Snoezelen Room is mainly composed of the following facilities: Working offices & open innovation spaces; Meeting and conference rooms; Multifunctional spaces and Lab Rooms for trying technologies that support intensive and ecological rehabilitation using realistic environments (VR/AR) and activities; Convivial meeting points and resting spaces. The Living Lab is equipped with IT software and devices for training, rehabilitation, monitoring, daily living assistance and communication technologies. The services currently offered by the infrastructure are the therapeutic VR research line, opened in 2010, which has developed 8 functional prototypes, from which Snoezelen VR is currently the stronger investment and mobilizer of research collaborations and the prototype tested in geriatric services and in palliative care services in 3 Spanish regions.

Virtual therapeutic environments for intensive and ecological rehabilitation using realistic environments including VR/AR, are conceived as an extended space with respect to the healthcare environment itself, oriented towards cognitive stimulation and promoting the wellbeing. Offer the possibility of carrying out series of cognitive activities while taking a walk through a city, visiting a museum, a supermarket or a park. The different immersive scenarios are being co-designed and piloted, and a commercial plan for including those in Gradior Suite under development https://www.gradior.es/suite-gradior/

Among the key equipment the LL counts with 2 HMD Odyssey+ – Windows Mixed Reality Headset and compatible pc’s, 2 sets haptic Gloves, 2 oculus rift and compatible pc’s and 1 oculus Rift S, 1 virtual rooms VRVS with sense presence. It provides a service to support equipment purchase for those external centres collaborating testing the more advanced prototypes available.

Trials focused on this VR therapeutic approach for supporting transition in care will be conducted to determine the user acceptance, experience and impact of the VR (immersive) environments and activities included, as well as the professional accompaniment protocol targeted to the needs of the scenario addressed in the project. This research line of VR controlled environments for patient training, empowerment, wellbeing (with opportunity for be integrated under a usual or innovative broader transition monitoring procedures) deserved 2 innovation prizes: Social Innovation Award of La Caixa 2019; Life Habitat 2020.

The researchers working in the Operational Center, in INTRAS Care Centers or in the external pilot LL’s (2 centers, 2 hospitals) are cooperating with other researchers and Living Labs together within various projects in order to design of future trials, ensuring know-how transfer and active collaborations for the integration of frameworks of evaluation.

Area(s) of work

Areas of work: Health & Wellbeing, Social Innovation, Artificial Intelligence, Rural

Subsections: AR/VR for training, wellbeing, social and healthcare practices; Digital training, inclusion and accessibility; Social and Health Care Transformation; Mental health; multisensorial approaches

Staff Expertise

The main fields of expertise of the staff in INTRAS VR/AR Environment and Snoezelen Room are:

  • Neuropsychology
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychomotricity
  • Participatory Design
  • Business Development
  • Commercial and Customer Service Area
  • Systems and Software Development
  • User Experience

Stakeholders Population

Real-user participants: (mostly but not limited to)

  • Healthy older adults (over 50 years old)
  • Older adults with neurodegenerative diseases, mild cognitive impairment and mild dementia
  • Adults and older adults suffering with a cognitive disorder condition
  • Stroke recovery patients
  • Adults and older adults living with significant influence of distressing actors such as isolation and loneliness
  • People with learning difficulties

Professionals:

  • Clinical Psychologists & rehabilitation experts (researchers)
  • Care and rehabilitation services managers and therapists
  • Social workers
  • Healthcare professionals
  • Medical and experts on ageing and AHA
  • Social and Health Services managers, case coordinators and case managers, as well as Reference personal assistant
  • People with technical background (engineering and computer scientists)
  • User experience experts, UI designers and other interested researchers
  • Living Lab and co-creation theory researchers
  • Policy makers

Services

Researchers granted Transnational Access at INTRAS VR/AR Environment and Snoezelen Room may benefit from the following servises:

Networking and capacity building: Capacity building; Expert opinion, and advisory services; Innovation network orchestration; Panel management; Stakeholder (and partner) analysis and mapping. Planning to offer: Equipment and facility rental service.

Project planning and management: Expert opinion, and advisory services; Temporary research funding; Living lab project planning and management; Panel management.

Market and competitor intelligence services: Access to data; Competitor and market analysis and benchmarking; Expert opinion, and advisory services; Post-market surveillance and market acceptance testing; Stakeholder (and partner) analysis and mapping. Planning to offer: Foresighting (trends, weak signals and wild cards).

Co-creation: Co-creation session; Expert opinion, and advisory services; Public procurement support services; Stakeholder (and partner) analysis and mapping. Planning to offer: Foresighting (trends, weak signals and wild cards).

Testing and validation: Clinical trials; Concept and proof-of-concept tests – concept feasibility study; Expert opinion, and advisory services; Idea selection and testing; Impact assessment and validation test; Large-scale real-life testing and piloting; Post-market surveillance and market acceptance testing; Prototyping test; Simulation test; Small-scale real-life testing and experimentation; Usability testing.

Advisory services: Expert opinion, and advisory services.

Marketing and sales support: Expert opinion, and advisory services; Marketing and sales support.

Visit our Living Lab Harmonisation Wiki Page for detailed descriptions of the Research & Development services that Living Labs offer.

Equipment

The following devices and technologies are accessible to researchers through the INTRAS VR/AR Environment and Snoezelen Room:

Activity Tracking/Monitoring

  • Physical activity (Kinect)
  • Physical performance (Gradior active)

Assisting Technology

  • Engaged users (Gradior, Captain, WAOW Tool, Peper Robot)
  • Natural language understanding (Peper robot)
  • Voice commands (CAPTAIN; Peper robot)

Biosignals: EEG (NeuroSky)

Cognitive function: Cognitive training (Gradior Suite)

Environment/context: Concentration levels (NeuroSky; Neurologic Laberynths)

Physiological monitoring

  • Patient history & demographics (Gradior)
  • Weight BMI (SmartWatch)
  • Virtual reality (Gradior Suite (Oculous Rift/ Quest; Google VR; HMD Odyssey+))

Virtual reality/interactive technology

  • Web Interaction (Gradior Suite)
  • Gesture detection/smile (Peper Robot)
  • Intuitive user interface (Gradior Suite)

Visit our Living Lab Harmonisation Wiki Page for more details regarding Living Lab technologies and devices.

Use Cases based on Researchers Expertise

Policy Makers: Studying the impact of new service models or new collaboration models in healthcare, designing or improving policies, gathering requirements for improving health and wellbeing of citizens, co-creation of research methodologies for policy making.

Computer/Technology Scientists: Developing systems/tools/ technologies, testing and evaluating an ICT tool, prototype and real-life testing, computer vision & AI, Virtual Reality & Augmented Reality, Cybersecurity

(Clinical, social, developmental, neuro-) Psychologists: Studying the behaviour and the mental wellbeing of participants, conducting psychometrics evaluation and real-life setting experimentation/observation/real life testing

Social workers/researchers: Conducting an investigation in accordance with the scientific methods and tools, studying the impact of new care models and/or care innovations on society, developing models for a caring and inclusive society

Researchers with clinical expertise: (Doctors, nurses, healthcare workers, specialists, physiotherapists etc.), conducting research of healthcare services and practices, research on symptomatology or epidemiology of a disease, analysis of clinical effects of research performed in the study, e.g., via real life testing

Experts in UX research and assessment: Developing the process for user experience design (UXD, UED, or XD) supporting user behaviour through usability, usefulness, and desirability provided in the interaction with a product or service, addressing all aspects as perceived by users with a focus on the quality of the user experience. Studying and experimenting the best practices for UI/UX and evaluating user’s experience in different situations and while using different tools

Experts in rehabilitation (physical, cognitive): Physiology, physiotherapy, occupational health research, rehabilitation and prevention. Cognitive diseases assistive technology, neuromuscular rehabilitation assistive technology

Business developers: Studying the product-market fit, matching a solution with a societal need, learning about the user acceptance of products and services, as well as about potential products to develop, willingness to pay, business model and ideal route to market

Experts in ergonomics and safety: Implementation and validation of ergonomic technologies/services to support workers and system performance, promoting ergonomics in working environments, improving both health/well-being and productivity, while avoiding occupational hazards

Citizen Scientists / users as co-researchers  User empowerment, training, design, analysis and implementation of strategies and methodologies for user engagement and for raising awareness and generating citizen participation

Biomedical researchers: Studying biochemical and physiological functions, investigating how the human body works with the aim of finding new ways to improve health. Biomedical engineering knowledge (Home hospitalization, Transitional Care, Multifunctional interaction), as well as digital biomarkers analysis (e.g., for cognitive state)

Experts in accessibility Design: Validating accessible Architectonics and escape route models with VR experiment and real-life simulations

Neuroscientists: Focusing on the brain and its impact on behaviour and cognitive functions (cognitive neuroscience, EEG-based BMI research, protocol / paradigm testing, study framework evaluation)

Innovation and design management researchers: Ecosystem and innovation management research, social network analysis. Evaluating how health and wellbeing ecosystem operates between different actors at local, regional, national and international level, including also scaling and commercialization

Experts in organizational studies: Co-creation, experimentation, organizational research, experts by experience / pier support included. Evaluation how multistakeholder collaboration and co-creation is done and how effective it is. Evaluates experimentations and experimentation culture. How users are involved into these processes

Data Scientists: Collecting, analysing and interpreting digital data, such as data analytics in healthcare and digital patient recordings (how patient information recording process is managed and utilized during the intervention by using digital tools in simulated situations)