eViP definitions

In eViP, repurposing means to convert a Virtual Patient (VP) created for one purpose into a VP fit for another purpose. The change of purpose or context could be cultural, it could cater for a different education scenario, or the VP could be repurposed for a different subject discipline or healthcare profession.

eViP has identified eight different repurposing contexts – including cultural aspects – that will be applied throughout the programme life cycle.

1. Repurposing to different cultures (ethnic aspects)

Ethnicity should not influence how a patient is treated or cared for, but there are medical conditions that are more ferquent in some ethnic groups and certain regions. Patients from different ethnic groups may also present their medical problems in different ways, and may require a different patient management approach with respect to illness history taking, and especially for questions about family situations, sexual activities and religion.

2. Repurposing to different cultures (language aspects)

It is common to encounter multi-lingual persons. However variations within the same language exist – for example patients from Spain and LAtin America may have the same illness but would describe their symptoms using different words and expressions. There are also words that differ in meaning in US and UK English, Spain Spanish, Portugese, Latin American Spanish, and so on.

3. Repurposing to different cultures (socio-economic and geographical aspects)

Specificl local procedures and guidelines remain even if medicine, dentristry and nursing professions are internationalised with treatment procedures becoming standardised on an international level. Certain hospitals, regions or countries differ in recommended medical procedures, legal regulations and lab test panels. There are sometimes cases of a recommended medical treatment being legal in one country but illegal in others. Other differences include the availability of resources for health care systems in various countries. For example, the first imaging test ordered for persistent back pain is a spine CT scan or MRI in a high-income country, whereas the first test could be a spine X-ray in a low-income without the same access to resources.

4. Repurposing to different cultures (professions and disciplines)

In eViP, repurposing a VP for a different subject discipline or healthcare profession is to widen the use by different groups from other medical and healthcare professions in addition to undergraduate medical and healthcare students.

5. Repurposing to different educational levels

Undergraduates, graduates, postgraduages, residency and those in specialist training all have different aims and will need different types of VPs. In eViP, repurposing a VP to different educational levels is to selectively adapt the VP content to match the learning objectives of a group of learners – allowing a greater number of students to use the VPs.

6. Repurposing to different educational scenarios

This involves adapting the VP so it can be used in different ways in the curriculum, ensuring a greater choice of approach to suing VPs for staff and students. Below is a short summary on the various different types of VPs:

  • Familiarisation VPs: used before teaching sessions
  • In-session VPs: within teaching sessions
  • Review VPs: after lessons and before exams
  • Assessment VPs: for formative/summative assessment
  • sVPs: for Self-directed learning

7. Repurposing for different VP structures

This involves changing the underlying logical model of the VP – either the transformation from a linear to a branched case, or from a free navigational electronic page describing a case to a structured web-based VP. This kind of repurposing corresponds to a modification of the Activity Model (AM) and/or Data Availability Model (DAM) in the MedBiquitous VP Specification.

8. Repurposing to different VP systems

This means the transfer of content using standards based appoaches from one VP system to another – e.g., importing and exporting VPs from one system to another using an XML technical profile based on the MedBiquitous VP Specification.

Content enrichment

Content enrichment is applicable to all kinds of repurposing. We want the Virtual Patients to be as interactive as possible for the benefit of the user, so where possible we include different learning objects such as text, videos, sounds, images, animations, assessments and even Second Life scenarios – all to enhance the educational value of the VPs.