What is the HSN Simulation Lab?
Before being relied upon to care for patients, doctors and nurses at Health Sciences North (HSN) have the opportunity to hone their skills in a unique training environment. HSN’s Simulation Lab provides a practical learning space where participants are encouraged to learn and refine skills.
“Practicing and learning new skills are vital to the implementation of high-quality care,” said Dr. Rob Anderson, Medical Lead for the Simulation Lab. “No different than a pilot practicing in a simulator, our health practitioners spend hours refining their skills in order to deliver the best care possible to our patients.”
The Simulation Lab, which opened its doors in 2012, is outfitted with state of the art video technology that allows learners to participate in simulations and then analyse the recording in a debriefing room.
“Once someone has completed a simulation, they will go to a debriefing room and their video is ready to be watched on the screen,” explained Suzanne Lortie-Carlyle, Manager of the Simulation Lab. “They debrief for forty-five minutes and it’s the best part of the whole teaching experience because this is where they can see what they did well and what they can improve on”.
Although the lab is a vital part of educating new doctors and nurses, current health care professionals can use the facility to learn a new skill or practice a procedure they have not done in a while.
“I love seeing highly-trained professionals get excited about learning again,” said Dr. Anderson. “It is really something special to see a nurse or physician who is busy with their clinical practice, come to the simulation lab and try something new. It is very rewarding.”
As part of HSN’s effort to make learning as practical as possible, the lab has child and adult manikins which can simulate a host of different medical conditions. Before the simulation, each manikin is carefully prepared with clothing, makeup and even fake blood to increase the authenticity of each situation. This high-level of detail improves learning outcomes, which in turn benefits patients.
“The main benefit of the Simulation Lab is improved patient safety,” said Lortie-Carlyle. “It’s a safe environment to learn from mistakes and improve. It benefits our patients and ultimately, our community.”