West Chester University
Adel Barimani, CIO
Vice President for Information Services
23 Anderson Hall
West Chester, PA 19383
Simulation has come to the nursing lab at West Chester University in full force! The “invasion” of high-fidelity Human Patient Simulation (HPS) models started with SimMan® (Laerdal) in 2009 and continues with the addition of addition of Noelle® and Newborn Hal® (Gaumard).
Simulation is the latest in technology in nursing education. It is the use of Human Patient Stimulation (HPS) models, in carefully planned “real-life” scenarios where the nursing students can sharpen their hands-on nursing skills, enhance critical thinking skills, and learn communication with other members of the health care team. These “high fidelity” HPS models can talk and move; they have programmed vital signs, blood pressure, and pulse detection points. They can have IV’s inserted, Foley catheters inserted, NG tubes and monitors placed, as well a full-blown CPR codes. This is all done in a realistic, safe environment for the students to learn. Simulation is fast becoming an acclaimed modality for educating health care providers, especially nurses.
Noelle® and Newborn Hal® HPS models, purchased with Tech Fee funds, provide students with a full range of authentic obstetric scenarios, from normal birth and newborn care to critical obstetrical emergencies and neonatal resuscitation. Noelle actually “births” a baby, and while most births are natural, Noelle® can also be delivered via cesarean section. Babies can be delivered either in the normal head first position, or breech. Newborn Hal® has realistic cord pulses; he/she cries, moves, turns colors and even can become limp and blue if the appropriate newborn care is not given. During the simulation process, the students perform as part of the health care team within the scenario, and then a debriefing session is done where the student evaluates performance outcomes, communication processes, and team work. In this way, the nursing student gets to learn essential nursing skills and hands-on care first on the HPM, and gain the confidence to move on to real live patients. In other words, the student can make mistakes on the HPS model before progressing to the bedside, improving the quality of care, patient safety, and confidence as the nursing student moves to the hospital, community or home setting with “live” patients.