Free Training Software for Florida First Responders

The Pivotal Decision 3D serious game is being provided for free to Florida first responders. The game trains police officers, firefighters, medics, and other rescuers to appropriately prioritize patient treatment (also known as “triage”) during a mass casualty incident. Pivotal Decision was created by the Virtual Heroes Division of Applied Research Associates for the University of Miami Gordon Center for Research in Medical Education.

In the first-person game, responders must navigate the incident area, locate casualties, and perform correct triage actions. Afterward, players review an after-action report that details global game achievements and casualty level details. Pivotal Decision is approved by the Florida Bureau of Emergency Medical Services for two hours of continuing education credit.

Said Virtual Heroes Senior Producer Steve McIlwain, “Working with the University of Miami was an excellent experience. They asked us to develop an application that provided easy access to mass casualty triage training for first responders within a post-disaster setting. Similar to our objectives for Zero Hour, a mass-casualty incident trainer we developed for the Department of Homeland Security, we strove to make Pivotal Decision accurate, realistic, and easy for emergency personnel to use.”

Pivotal Decision is available at Florida first responders download for free; for out-of-state responders and other users the cost is $20.00.

Virtual Heroes has won multiple awards for its simulations, serious games and 3D virtual worlds using AAA game-engine technology to provide interactive learning solutions for healthcare, government customers, and corporate training. More information on Virtual Heroes can be found at

About Applied Research Associates, Inc. & Virtual Heroes

Applied Research Associates, Inc. (ARA) was founded 1979 to solve problems of national importance. The company’s applied research delivers scientific solutions for national defense, homeland security, aerospace, healthcare, transportation, and manufacturing. With 1,100 Employee Owners at locations in the U.S. and Canada, ARA offers a broad range of technical expertise in defense technologies, computer software and simulation, systems analysis, civil engineering, biomedical engineering, environmental technologies, and blast testing and measurement.

The Virtual Heroes Division of Applied Research Associates, Inc. creates collaborative interactive learning solutions for healthcare, federal systems, and corporate training markets. Advanced Learning Technologies (ALT) leverage simulation learning and digital games-based training paradigms to accelerate learning, increase user proficiency, and reduce training costs. Virtual Heroes is located in Raleigh, North Carolina, and Orlando, Florida.

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Steve McIlwain
Senior Producer
Virtual Heroes Division