Technology Awards 2019

10 GHP / Technology Awards 2019 , Nov19486 Best Medical Simulation R&D Specialists - Europe Meyer-Hentschel Institute is a leading company in developing simulation tools for self-experi- encing various medical states of the human body. Following the institutes recent recognition in this year‘s GHP Technology Awards, we invited Dr. Gundolf Meyer-Hentschel, CEO, to tell us more about this newfield of simulation. Inspired by simulation in aviation training, medical simulation has grown in popularity in the last years - from patients played by actors, to computerized mannequins that perform dozens of human functions. To begin, Dr. Meyer-Hentschel, you added a new facet to the simulation game, could you tell us more? MH: As a behavioural scientist, I have great interest in the thoughts and feelings of others. This led me to the development of simulation tools, that let you walk in another’s shoes. Would you be able to provide an example? MH: In the early nineties, we started developing an age suit as an attempt for a better understanding the growing numbers of old patients. In 1994, we presented a first prototype which went viral. To my best knowledge, this was the first suit that let probands experience many deficiencies and limitations of old age. Extremely positive feedback from media worldwide encouraged us to continue our work. Over the years, we refined the aging experience in many ways. On the topic of the age suit, what did the first one simulate? MH: Hearing loss, age related farsightedness, loss of strength, reduced sensitivity of fingers and loss of dexterity and even the restricted movement of joints. Which institutions adopted the suit? MH: Among the first clients were medical universities and clinics, later senior care as well as industrial companies. In the health care sector, our ‘AgeExplorer’ suit is used in training empathy of doctors and nurses towards older patients. In addition, experiencing old age can help to better understand the sometimes strange behaviours of old people. This strengthens empathy in the end, too. With regards to the wider industry, why is there such an interest in simulating old age? MH: Simulation of old age can bring creative break throughs in developing and designing products, which better serves the needs of elderly customers. We did a lot of consulting for manufacturers of household appliances, for instance Miele, Siemens and Bosch. Much interest came from the automotive industry, too. Ford Motor Company asked us to develop a suit specially for their