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New St. Luke's Sim Lab Highlights Advances in Medical Training

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Trauma educator Kathryn BrownA state-of-the-art Sim Lab was opened for staff and community training in September.

Nurses, paramedics, EMTs and physicians will learn and hone skills on the life-size Sim Man and Sim Baby models, who breathe and talk like live patients and can be programmed to simulate numerous different real-life scenarios such as choking or heart problems.

The Sim Lab is equipped with cameras, monitors and a control booth located behind a one-way mirror, where instructors can observe every move students make.

"Everything is recorded so that after the simulation takes place, there's an opportunity to debrief and say, 'Let's go back and look at this part of the scenario – how might we have done this differently?'" said Linda Basara, St. Luke's director of education.

The development of the $25,000 Sim Lab was made possible by a generous donation to St. Luke's Foundation by an anonymous donor.

Members of the St. Luke's School of NursinTrauma educator Kathryn Browng Class of 1963, in whose honor the Sim Lab was dedicated on September 20, shared stories at the dedication of their training 50 years ago, in which student nurses practiced intubating one another and giving shots to classmates – a stark contrast to the technology now offered in the Sim Lab.

"This is important training for our health care professionals here and in the community," said Catherine Carter Huber, director of St. Luke's Foundation. "Education is an important part of the Foundation and this can help not only those here at St. Luke's providing care, but also those out in the field being the first ones on the scene."

Kathryn Brown, RN, trauma/outreach injury prevention educator, applied for the grant from the Foundation and will be using the Sim Lab to train participants in ACLS (advanced cardiovascular life support) and PALS (pediatric advanced life support) certification classes.

"The playback capability and debriefing are a great opportunity to keep it positive and break it down into pieces," she said. "Doing the wrong thing is the right thing to do on a mannequin and the wrong thing to do on a patient, so it's a good way to practice."nursing staff demonstrate the capabilities of the Sim Lab