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December 3, 2020 – Virtual Reality Technology, Machine Learning, Biosensing Converging to Transform Healthcare – Walter Greenleaf

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This presentation provides an overview of how the coming wave of Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality, Machine Learning and Biosensing Technology are converging, and elaborates how this convergence will impact clinical care, disability solutions, and personal health and wellness.

Although entertainment, social connection, and gaming is driving the initial adoption of VR and AR technology, the deepest and most significant impact of the next generation of VR/AR technology will be to enhance clinical care and to improve personal health and wellness. VR and AR technology will also help facilitate the shift of medicine from clinic-based care to telemedicine based care, and to facilitate personalized medicine.

We know from decades of clinical research that VR/AR technology can provide breakthrough solutions that address the most difficult problems in healthcare – ranging from mood disorders such as Anxiety and Depression to PTSD, Addictions, Autism, Cognitive Aging, Stroke Recovery, and Physical Rehabilitation, to name just a few.

VR and AR Systems can be used to improve medical training such as surgical skill training and procedure planning by applying simulation-based learning principals. Personal health and wellness will be improved by using VR to promote healthy lifestyles and to reduce stress and anxiety.

VR/AR technology, when combined with Machine Learning and Biosensing technology can be used to improve clinical measurements and assessments by making them more objective and functional. As the cost of healthcare rises, this confluence of emerging technology will be used as the foundation for next-generation telemedicine platforms to reduce costs of care delivery, improve clinical efficiency, and reach previously underserved populations.

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Walter Greenleaf, Ph.D. is a neuroscientist and a medical technology developer working at Stanford University. With over three decades of research and development experience, Walter is considered a leading authority in the field of digital medicine and medical virtual reality technology.

As a research scientist and medical product developer, Walter’s focus has been on computer-supported clinical products, with a specific focus on virtual reality and digital health technology, including systems to treat Post-traumatic Stress, Anxiety Disorders, Stroke, Addictions, Autism, and other difficult problems in behavioral and physical medicine. He has had a principal role in several pioneering medical product companies, including Pear Therapeutics, Virtually Better, and InWorld Solutions.

Walter is currently a Distinguished Visiting Scholar at Stanford University’s MediaX Program, a Visiting Scholar at Stanford University’s Virtual Human Interaction Lab, and the Director of Technology Strategy at the University of Colorado National Mental Health Innovation Center. He previously served as the Director of the Mind Division, Stanford Center on Longevity, where his focus was on age-related changes in cognition. Walter a member of the Board of Directors for Brainstorm: The Stanford Laboratory for Brain Health Innovation, for Sine Wave, and for Cognitive Leap.

In addition to his research at Stanford University, Walter is the technology and neuroscience advisor to several early-stage medical product companies and accelerator / incubator programs.