The Human Patient Simulator (HPS) can be used by trainees at any educational level by programming appropriately complex scenarios for that level. Several methodologies can be used to teach, including any combination of the following:

  • patient condition known or unknown to trainee
  • diagnosis and / or treatment
  • pauses for discussion or run in real time
  • equipment in-service, operation, maintenance, and troubleshooting
  • teamwork and communication skills (medical content is irrelevant)
  • evaluation / testing (try until you pass, not one chance with a grade)

HPS systems are based on physiologic and pharmacologic modeling programs which create realistic patient responses automatically, based on user interventions.  The lab has one pediatric and two adult manikins.

SimMan Universal Patient Simulator is a portable full body manikin which is used for a number of training programs throughout the hospital.  The instructor creates outputs for the manikin, which display on a simulated patient monitor.  Mock codes, which look for system problems, and practice codes, which teach medical protocols, are two examples of programs used on-site in patient care areas.

The Noelle Maternal and Birthing Simulator is a wireless birthing model which allows practice of routine and complicated perinatal scenarios.  The system comes with a fully articulated birthing infant and is compatible with Newborn Hal for a more integrated mother - infant resuscitation scenario.  Monitors include maternal vital signs, fetal monitor traces and uterine contraction traces, all of which are controlled by the remote wireless laptop.  Prewritten scenarios can be used or written by the instructor, or values can be changed on the fly, based on user actions.

Newborn Hal Mobile Team Trainer is a full term infant-sized wireless manikin for perinatal and infant resuscitation training.  When used in combination with the Noelle system, a full-scale delivery crisis can be simulated.  The manikin has vital signs on a custom display, skin color changes, voice, and movement.  Monitors include real EKGs and vital signs on a custom monitor, including arterial BP, saturation, and respiratory rate.  A wireless laptop controls the monitor and manikin changes.  Trends can be preprogrammed, or a prewritten scenario can be used.

The AccuTouch Endoscopy Simulator is an interactive system that permits learning and practice in anatomy, equipment handling, diagnostic procedures, and treatment options. There is visual realism (the tissue looks real), physical realism (the tissue 'moves' when it is touched), physiological realism (the patient exhibits bleeding, vital sign changes, coughing, etc.) and tactile realism (users feel resistance to their movements).  There are bronchoscopy and colonoscopy modules.  Both provide educational content before and during the procedure, real time feedback during the procedure, and a performance report after the procedure.

Head 2 Head is a virtual reality minimally invasive surgical trainer.  The system consists of 2 units which can be used independently or jointly for teamwork or competition.  The beginning levels are non-anatomic, to allow the trainees to familiarize themselves with the restrictions inherent in minimally invasive surgery, such as hand-eye dissociation and lack of depth perception.  Two-player activities include competitions such as a race to complete a tic-tac-toe board against a real opponent or the computer, or working together to move an object to a target location.  Once comfortable with these skills, the trainees move on to more advanced skills that involve multiple tools and skills to be combined, such as dissecting free a gall bladder.

Dexter Fiber optic Trainer is a fiberoptic training system that uses a nonanatomic model and a real flexible bronchoscope to help trainees understand how to maneuver the scope through difficult areas and how to keep oriented to the patient while getting the scope to a particular location. It also teaches how to judge distance from one point to another, which would be useful when documenting an abnormality in a patient.

Minimally invasive surgery techniques are practiced on either the 3-D Med Minimally Invasive Training System or the expert Laparoscopic Trainer.  Real equipment is used to learn techniques as well as allowing trainees to adapt to the unique environment of minimally invasive surgery.  The trainers consist of a working area into which is placed either real tissue or a simulated model.  Either a fixed camera or a hand-held camera may be used.

The IngMar ASL 500is a lung simulator which demonstrates normal lung function or pathophysiologic conditions.  It can also be used for ventilator demonstrations, evaluations and training for multiple specialties.  The ASL 5000 can be used as a single or double lung model, and can simulate patients from neonates to large adults.  Linear and nonlinear changes can be made to the parameters.

Lung sounds can be taught using the Lung Sounds Auscultation Trainer (LSAT).  The LSAT allows trainees to learn to distinguish and identify lung sounds in a clinical context using x-rays, clinical findings, and patient presentations.  The sounds can be auscultated on the manikin torso for individual use or through a speaker for group settings.

Other Task Specific Trainers are used to teach anatomic and/or psychomotor aspects of a technique.  Anatomic models are available for catheterization, invasive monitor placement, chest needle decompression and airway management. There is also a full body manikin to practice CPR.  Several models teach spinal and epidural procedures.  Non-anatomic models include trainers for bronchoscopy and respiratory physiology.

Standard clinical equipment is used throughout the center.  Trainees can get familiar with equipment they have not used before, get a feel for how the pieces of equipment work together, and space limitations in particular environments. The Center uses anesthesia machines, ICU ventilators, anesthetic and surgical equipment, ICU monitors, prehospital defibrillators and monitors, and other clinical tools.