SimConverse Secures Seed Funding to Expand Access to Healthcare Communication Training
Sydney-based SimConverse has raised A$1.5 million (about $987,000) in a seed funding round led by Folklore Ventures, with participation from Artesian.
WHAT HE DOES
Founded in 2020, SimConverse is a simulation platform that uses generative AI to role-play any patient, colleague, or casualty in medical communication training. It is designed to be adaptable and customizable to meet learners’ curriculum needs.
WHAT’S THE POINT
According to a press release, the seed funding will be used to attract more users in the US, UK and Australia.
Early adopters include Queensland Health in Australia and NHS Lothian in the UK. It has also partnered with global universities, such as University of Canberra, University of Liverpool and King’s College London.
WHY IS IT IMPORTANT
SimConverse focuses on improving the verbal communication skills of learners at all levels. He claims that ineffective communication between healthcare professionals contributes to medical errors and patient harm “with approximately 70% of medical errors attributed to communication breakdowns”.
“Communication is the primary determinant of the quality of care a patient will receive. Without good communication, you can’t treat, you can’t diagnose, and you can’t provide care,” said CEO and co-founder Aidan Roberts.
The use of virtual reality technology is the latest trend in medical education and training in Australia and elsewhere. Vantari VR, a major player in this space, has helped accelerate the education of nurses and doctors across major hospitals in australia, such as Fiona Stanley Hospital, Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Westmead Hospital and Nepean Hospital. He also supported medical institutions outside metropolitan areas like the Latrobe Regional Hospital.
Even the Ministry of Defense is also using virtual reality to improve the training of its combat medics. Based on virtual reality Virtual tactical combat First responder training company Real Response’s program was recently launched with support from the Defense Innovation Hub.
According to Folklore partner Alister Coleman, one of SimConverse’s investors, existing health education simulation tools “lack effective training and breadth.”
He said they decided to invest in SimConverse because the platform equips healthcare professionals with the skills to “engage in meaningful conversations” with their patients and, in turn, develop a “more holistic understanding of their well-being, reduce the risk of errors, and ultimately provide better care.”