The Groningen Company VRelax has won a prestigious prize on 19 May. The international Prix Galien Medtech Innovation Award is presented to companies that are introducing meaningful developments in healthcare.
VRelax changes the approach to stress. Thanks to relaxation in Virtual Reality (VR), the lives of people with mental or physical problems are significantly improved. This allows existing therapy to be effectively supported without having to resort to additional medication or intensive supervision. The mission of VRelax: reducing stress and anxiety, distraction from worry or pain and giving people back control, by using fewer pills, and providing more VR solutions within healthcare.
The jury praises the approach of the Groningen start-up for its on-going (clinical) research and validation of the effect of VRelax within mental health care, hospitals and health and safety. The fact that this is done together with patients and scientific healthcare professionals attests to a long-term strategy in which users are central and the correct implementation of technical innovations is guaranteed. The recent CE certification helps enormously in this regard. The jury also appreciates the user-friendliness of the system. The app has a high degree of freedom of choice, allowing the user to choose which virtual environment best suits his / her state of mind at that time.
The jury of the Prix Galien MedTech Innovation Award expresses its sincere admiration for VRelax and their ability to use VR broadly in healthcare. This is a fantastic development for the vulnerable patient, but also for the care provider who is under a lot of stress, especially in COVID time. A development that is important, especially in situations where increasingly vulnerable patients have to be cared for with fewer and fewer people.
Many people suffer from stress, for example due to burnout, depression or anxiety. This results in a lot of personal suffering and high medical costs (CBS, 2019). Reducing stress and learning to relax, are important pillars of good psychological health that help to reduce healthcare costs and reduce medication use.
It is precisely because of the current pandemic that vulnerable groups are more likely to run into mental health problems. VRelax offers many applications during the crisis, but has also been used for much longer to support healthcare professionals and patients. Regular treatments are often a long, intensive process with personal guidance and accompanying medication. VRelax has been developed to offer a good alternative in this regard.