Virtual Linear Accelerator (VERT)
The VERT (Virtual Environment Radiotherapy Training) at UWE Bristol is a life-size 3D virtual radiotherapy treatment room complete with patient and linear accelerator.
UWE Bristol radiography students in the Department of Allied Health Professions benefit from this amazing training platform which develops invaluable operational skills and builds confidence away from the pressured clinical environment.
The linear accelerator is the primary tool for delivering radiotherapy treatment to tumours. The actual tools are very expensive and in constant clinical use within oncology units, so it is very difficult for students to receive practical learning time on the actual machines.
Virtual radiotherapy training environment
One wall of a blacked-out lecture theatre provides the screen for the VERT. Students wearing 3D glasses then use a control identical to one used in a real-world situation to position the virtual table and deliver doses of radiotherapy to a virtual patient.
In this environment, the beam is visible as it passes through and exits the patient so the student gains a valuable insight into how the internal organs and spinal column can be affected.
VERT at UWE Bristol
The VERT was installed with assistance from the Department of Health to address the lack of practical linear accelerator experience in graduating students. The decision to select UWE Bristol as a location for this technology was a recognition of our position as a leading university for the training of future health professionals.