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News and Updates


Ventilator Training

Our students received a special treat recently as they were given hands on training with a working mechanical ventilator system courtesy of the Seton Family of Hospitals.  BSN students learn about ventilation as part of the information covered during the Adult Health course of their 3rd semester.

Normally, the students follow-up their classroom lecture with a comprehensive simulation lab scenario to reinforce the concepts they have just learned. However, through the combined efforts of course coordinator Regina Jillapalli, and the simulation lab staff – Dr. Tiffany Holmes and Mr. Ryan Douglas – a special twist was added to the standard training.

Mr. Nathan Rodrigues, a former Texas State BSRC graduate & Respiratory Care Practitioner (RCP) with the Seton Family of Hospitals, graciously stopped by and gave the students expanded information regarding how they might interact with a ventilated patient and/or their local RT department. Nathan and the lab staff utilized one of the school’s Simman® 3G manikins to demonstrate the process of mechanical ventilation and help bring these concepts to life.

According to Nathan,

“The Nursing students received fundamental mechanical ventilation instruction including modes of ventilation, weaning methods, alarms, troubleshooting skills, and the role of the Respiratory Therapist. The hands-on training they received will help provide them the dexterity that is requisite for their successful integration into the interdisciplinary workforce, particularly the emergency departments and critical care units.”

Mr. Rodrigues fielded a multitude of questions during the session and many students commented afterwards about how much they enjoyed the training. The experience proved to be invaluable for everyone involved and is planned to be continued for subsequent courses in the future.


Round Rock EMTS Academy Training 

The Simulation Labs hosted paramedic students from the Round Rock EMTS Academy and St. David’s Round Rock Medical Center Paramedic Program on June 14.

The students participated in six life-like scenarios using the high-fidelity manikins here at the St. David’s School of Nursing at Texas State University. On most other days, the manikins can be found lying quietly in their assigned hospital beds. However, they were moved and configured specifically to accomodate the day's activities. These advanced patient simulators have the ability to talk, exhibit rise and fall of the chest to simulate breathing, have heart and lung sounds and can accommodate an array of emergency procedures.  

To provide a real world environment for the paramedic students, these manikins were placed in settings similar to what EMS personnel might encounter. For example, one manikin was lying on the floor in a cramped bathroom with no lighting (in the lab's Home Care unit) to simulate a heroin overdose in an apartment with no electricity. Another patient was found lying on the floor of the nursing building lobby having just "fallen" from a 20-foot ladder and suffering a spinal injury. The paramedic students had support from other advanced EMT and EMT students to make the simulations progress as true to reality as possible.

This is the second year that the nursing school and EMTS Academy have collaborated to hold the simulation lab day. The six scenarios were developed by EMTS Academy Director Matt Nealand and nursing school simulation lab staff members Tiffany Holmes and Ryan Douglas.

"The best way to learn is to actually do it. The second best way is to simulate it," said Nealand. "Working with the School of Nursing Simulation Lab allows us to create realistic critical airway training for our paramedic students and prepares them for their internships this summer."

The St. David’s School of Nursing, which opened in August 2010, offers Bachelor of Science in Nursing as well as Master's-level Family Nurse Practitioner degrees. The EMTS Academy and Round Rock Medical Paramedic Program trains paramedics here at Texas State's Round Rock campus.


New Lab Resources 

SimPad
The Simulation Labs were recently able to upgrade the control units for our VitalSim® capable manikin product line. Previously, these manikins were operated by a large interface box and paddle-shaped remote. Although effective at providing vital signs for assessment activities by students, the older control units were somewhat limited in their capabilities.

The acquisition of the new SimPad® control units brings a whole new level of functionality to our existing VitalSim capable manikins. Not only is the SimPad's large, intuitive touchscreen much easier for students and faculty to operate, the customizable programming features of the SimPads allow the lab staff much greater flexibility in creating unique scenarios for use with these manikins.

To complement the SimPad’s enhanced control capabilities, additional software was purchased that allows real-time patient information to displayed on the existing touchscreen monitors provided at each bedside. Prior to the SimPad upgrade, this simulation-enhancing patient data was unavailable.
 

Some images and information provided courtesy of Laerdal Medical Incorporated


RRISD Students

On April 13th, the Round Rock High School Health chapter of HOSA (Health Occupation Students of America) paid a visit to the simulation labs. Students enrolled in the HOSA program are exposed to wide range of information, activities, and experiences all related to careers in healthcare. After a brief program overview (and Q & A session) with our admissions team and faculty, the students were treated to a tour of the simulation labs that included hands-on activities with some of our manikins. The students came away with valuable insight on what it takes to become a nurse and what to expect once in the field.


Physical Therapy 

Although based on the San Marcos campus, the nursing simulation labs played host to Texas State University physical therapy students on March 29th of this year. During their visit, students were able to utilize some of the unique equipment assets of the lab to hone their skills in recognizing various heart and breath sounds, taking blood pressures, and assessing common ECG rhythms. The education of students within the entire College of Health Professions is a collaborative effort, and we were glad to have our colleagues here to share our high-tech resources.