Kup czasopismo
Background: The population ageing phenomenon is mainly attributable to the increasing proportion of people >60 years of age. This demographic situation requires more attention to the needs of the elderly. Given the lack of effective methods to expand the knowledge of and increase sensitivity to elderly people’s problems, especially among the younger generation, an attempt has been made to use virtual reality (VR) to prepare an educational tool focused on these problems. This paper will focus on the use of VR in depicting fundamental problems in the daily live of older people. Material and Methods: For project purposes, a questionnaire (26 question) was developed, concerning data on socio-demographic situation, health and physical conditions; social, living and housing support needs. Additionally, qualitative interviews were conducted with elderly people regarding their needs about housing arrangements and daily activities. It was distributed to 100 people, 34 completed questionnaires were obtained from 30 women and 4 men. The study results were intended as information that would provide the basis for developing VR scenarios, not for the epidemiological purposes. Results: The mean age of the respondents was 73.7±7.5 (60‒86 years). Different situations, as heavy housework, lifting/carrying heavy objects, lifting hands above the shoulder level, bending and squatting were identified that pose problems for elderly people. Based on these results, 3 scenario proposals were prepared, including situations: in the bathroom, in the supermarket, on a trip to the city. These scenarios were used to prepare the exercises in VR in the frame of European project – the Mixed Reality on Universal Design’s Secret Service (Mr. UD) Project. Conclusions: The use of immersive technology such as VR can be beneficial for young people to be able to see perspectives of the elderly. Students from various fields (medicine, nursing, future engineers, designers, sociologists, etc.) may feel like the elderly and experience their daily challenges. Med Pr. 2023;74(3):159–70