The Abbott technology is a consumer-focused mixed reality application completely controlled through eye tracking, which provides donors with an immersive digital experience while donating blood

Abbott and Blood Centers of America Mixed Reality Experience 2

Abbott and Blood Centres of America launch mixed reality experience. (Credit: Abbott)

US-based medical device company Abbott, in partnership with Blood Centres of America, has unveiled a new, advanced mixed reality application for use during blood donation.

The digital experience is designed to improve the blood donation process, attract new donors and motivate a younger generation to give blood.

Also, it addresses the global challenge of sustaining a reliable blood supply, said the medical device company.

Abbott divisional vice president, medical, scientific and clinical affairs Alex Carterson said: “This innovative use of mixed reality is the most recent example of how Abbott is creating leading-edge technology to address a key health care need in the world, maintaining the blood supply.

“Not only is it an immersive and unique use of mixed reality controlled completely through eye tracking, it’s a high-tech and creative way to improve the donation experience and make it more appealing for people to participate.”

Virtual Reality (VR) is a technology that enables users to experience the digital world.

Mixed reality is similar to VR, but allows users to experience the surroundings as they immerse themselves in a digital world.

The mixed reality setting uses Microsoft HoloLens 2 holographic computer that enables hands-free interaction with three-dimensional digital objects and a library of applications.

Microsoft healthcare global chief medical officer and vice president David C Rhew said: “We’ve seen the impact digital technologies can have in healthcare, from empowering health team collaboration and increasing clinician productivity to enhancing the patient experience.

“We’re pleased to see Abbott embrace mixed reality to create a positive experience for blood donors and to encourage the public to donate.”

Abbott said that its mixed reality application allows blood donation professionals to safely conduct the donation and interact with donors at every step of the process.

The donors wear lightweight mixed reality headsets to enter a digital world, and their eyes are always visible during the donation to ensure constant monitoring.

They remain fully aware of their surroundings, to ensure an easy and safe donation.

Abbott said that its mixed reality application was designed based on research that natural settings are the most preferred environment as donors give blood.