New device teaches needle technique -, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

New device teaches needle technique

February 19, 2003

by Scott Budman

Despite the uncertain economy, one business that's firing on all cylinders is homeland security, and our nation's military is looking to many businesses for help.

A California company is helping the Army feel healthier.

"I’m gonna aim towards the vein." Dean Chang is giving a shot, but he's not a doctor, he’s the Chief Technology officer of San Jose’s Immersion Corporation.

Immersion's Medical Division makes the Cath-Sim, a cutting edge training device that uses force feedback technology to let you feel what it's like to inject a patient with a needle.

"Now I’m in the vein and you can see the blood flying right there," says Chang.

Immersion's already sold several devices to hospitals and med schools. Its most recent customer is the United States Army. "So Cath-Sim actually lets you feel the exact type of sensations you would feel on an actual patient," said Chang.

The Army bought dozens of Cath-Sims, so our soldiers will be ready to give shots, take blood, or hook up I-Vs while in the field of battle.

They used to practice on oranges, but now, the training is a little more sophisticated. "It’s second nature because they've already done that same procedure thousands of times and it was just like what it feels like on a human patient, except it was done in a safe environment of a computer simulation," Chang said.

For both the Army and immersion, the simulator is a shot in the arm.

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