The TIDES Virtual Reality (VR) study uses innovative VR methods to examine how bias and discrimination influences clinical decision making. This will enable us to tackle inequalities and discrimination experiences in health services.


A novel VR simulation was developed to investigate the role of bias and discrimination in clinical decision making. An iterative and collaborative process was used to build and refine the content of the VR simulation based on input from the core TIDES team, clinical experts and the KCL Virtual Reality Research Lab. In our simulation, we were able to manipulate various sociodemographic characteristics of the virtual patients (e.g., gender, race and migration status) to investigate bias and discrimination in clinical decision making from an intersectional perspective. Thirty-five healthcare practitioners were recruited to the study between January 2020 and September 2022.

The participant’s task was to conduct a 10-minute consultation with each virtual patient to determine their health problem and provide a treatment recommendation. After each consultation with the virtual patients, participants were asked to complete a short survey to provide ratings of the virtual patients’ personality characteristics, probable behaviour and social roles, and overall health.


We are currently analysing both quantitative and qualitative data from the study which will be published shortly.