May 12, 2017

Support UTSA-CS/UTHSA Team in HeroX Simulation Competition

Dr. John Quarles, associate professor of computer science at the University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA), is in collaboration with emergency physicians from the University of Texas Health San Antonio (UTHSA) to revolutionize training simulation for first responders such as EMTs and firefighters. This collaboration project, MedCognition, is supported with seed funding and financial assistance from UTSA's and UTHSA's commercialization offices.


Quarles and his MedCognition team created a patented simulator that they believe is going to be more realistic, more portable, and one-fifth of the price of current high-fidelity simulators on the market. Comparative mannequin simulators can cost close to $100,000 each. The team's hope is that their system will make high-fidelity simulation accessible for first responders, who rarely have access to the existing costly simulators due to budget concerns.

MedCognition's simulator, called PerSimTM, utilizes cutting-edge augmented reality technology to display an interactive, highly realistic, and animated virtual patient. Currently, the prototype can simulate several common emergent symptoms such as difficulty breathing, stroke, seizure, and bruises from car accidents. They hope to release PerSimTM Beta in September, 2017, funding permitting.

The team entered a HeroX contest ( that focuses on new concepts for first responder simulation systems. If the team wins the HeroX contest, they will use the prize money – as much as $50,000 - to simulate many more symptoms, patients, and scenarios, which is what they need to take PerSimTM to market.

Your vote can help them reach this goal. Please show your support and vote online for our UTSA/UTHSA team before May 19th.

To submit your vote, click on the following link:


Dr. Quarles has spoken at a number of interviews regarding the PerSimTM technology, including networks such as PBS, Spectrum News, WOAI Radio, and Texas Public Radio.