IKONA creates immersive content and mixed reality applications designed to transform the patient experience and train the next generation of healthcare providers. Working at the intersection of storytelling, healthcare and technology, IKONA collaborates closely with medical institutions to identify their needs, and implements research-backed solutions that have been clinically proven to decrease patient stress and increase patient satisfaction.
IKONA’s story began in 2015, when neurosurgeons Kimon Bekelis, MD and George Kakoulides, MD initiated a groundbreaking experiment to explore the effects of virtual reality therapy on surgical patients.
Working at the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, Drs Bekelis and Kakoulides created a VR experience designed to alleviate the anxieties of patients awaiting surgery. This VR experience was then used in a Randomized Controlled Trial of more than 120 individuals and the results were staggering. Patients who experienced VR prior to their procedures were the clear winners; they went into their surgeries feeling less stress, and emerged feeling far more satisfied. Drs Bekelis’ and Kakoulides’ findings were published in the prestigious Annals of Surgery in June of 2017 and served as the foundation upon which IKONA was ultimately built.
In 2016 the two surgeons were introduced to Tim Fitzpatrick, a technology sector equities trader at BMO Capital Markets in New York, who possessed a unique understanding of the importance of their work. For Tim, improving the patient experience is personal: he is a US Navy veteran who sustained injuries while flying that led him to spend nearly two years in and out of VA hospitals—and even more time researching how cutting-edge technologies can be harnessed to help others going through similar experiences. The co-founders created IKONA with a single mission in mind: to transform the patient experience by educating patients and training providers.
Since its founding, IKONA has maintained a laser-focus on technological advancements. Working closely with Chief VR/AR Strategist Kel O’Neill, an Emmy-nominated immersive filmmaker who led the Economist’s forays into VR, IKONA is now creating a library of immersive content tailored to meet the needs of medical institutions of all sizes. To build out their collection of AR apps and VR experiences, IKONA has enlisted a roster of creators that includes an Oculus VR For Good Fellow, a Lovie- and Digiday-Award winning creative technologist, and an expanding roster of graphic designers, developers and producers who have taken leading roles in projects for such clients as the Wall Street Journal, PBS and Within.
IKONA’s easy-to-use, subscription-based content platform makes virtual reality accessible to the full spectrum of health care service providers. Whether you’re a local private practice, regional medical center, global healthcare corporation or managed care organization, IKONA has you covered.