Cookies on this website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Continue' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

The National Institute of Health Research (NIHR) awarded £4 million to enable state-of-the-art psychological therapy to be delivered via virtual reality (VR) in the NHS, in a project that brings together a team of NHS trusts, universities, a mental health charity, the Royal College of Art, and a University of Oxford spin-out company.

Nhs mental health services to offer virtual reality treatment.jpg

Image courtesy of Oxford VR

'Our project will see one of the most exciting and powerful new technologies implemented in the NHS for the first time” said the project lead, Professor Daniel Freeman from Oxford University’s Department of Psychiatry.

'Virtual reality treatment can help patients transform their lives. When people put on our headsets, a virtual coach takes them into computer-generated simulations of the situations they find troubling.

'The coach guides the patient through these scenarios, helping them practise techniques to overcome their difficulties. Patients often find it easier to do this work in the virtual world – and they enjoy using our VR applications – but the beauty is that the benefits transfer to the real world,' said Professor Freeman, who is also a clinical psychologist at Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust.

Find out more (University of Oxford website)

Find out more (Department of Psychiatry website)