Simulation services came to Presbyterian Healthcare Services in September of 2007 due to a generous gift from the Presbyterian Foundation. Because of this group’s vision and forethought regarding the provision for our patients' best possible care, Clinical Education was able to purchase 7 medium and 2 high fidelity manikins. Since that time, we have purchased 2 more medium fidelity manikins which are housed in a “Virtual Hospital” room on 4th floor of Presbyterian Hospital and the Pathways Pavilion at out North Side building.
This instructional design offers the learner the opportunity to experience the entire spectrum of patient care including interviewing, assessment, diagnosis, planning, implementation and evaluation. The manikins "talk," demonstrate physiologic functions such as heartbeats, palpable pulses, breathing with variable lung sounds and bowel sounds. Procedures/interventions can be performed with realistic responses to these interventions, which will allow patient evaluation.
Since the inception of our simulation program, simulation has been embedded in multiple learning arenas, which literature has shown to improve patient care and outcomes. Developing teamwork, learning to be an effective team member and effective communication skills along with acquisition of technical skills are practiced and improved through scenario-based learning.
A wide range of simulations are being utilized throughout our delivery system to improve patient safety and outcomes. Examples are:
- Nurse techs learn invasive line insertion
- Mock patient emergencies are practiced
- Recent graduates of nursing schools learn to develop professional roles responsibilities, and effective teamwork in various patient settings
- Nursing students are exposed to increased numbers of clinical situations
- Preceptors are instructed in assisting the development of critical thinking skills
- Education Resource nurses utilize the manikins to assist staff on focusing their cares for specific patient populations
- Adult and pediatric life support skills are learned and reinforced
The learning environment is structured so that groups of 4-6 people participate in this interactive experience. This allows active group participation with learners providing suggestions, assistance and feedback throughout the patient scenarios. An integral part of any simulation is the debriefing or review after the completion of the scenario. Learning opportunities are reinforced, improving the likelihood of transition of knowledge and implementation of critical thinking to actual patient care episodes. Ultimately, patient safety is improved as staff responds appropriately to changes in patient status.