Representatives from Madisonville Community College (MCC) and Baptist Health Madisonville (BHM) officially announced the opening of the Interprofessional Simulation Hospital during an open house on October 20. The simulated hospital provides a risk free environment in which skills can be realistically challenged, protocols perfected, code situations practiced, and effective interprofessional team dynamics developed. MCC nursing and allied health program students and healthcare providers will practice the all-important skill of communicating with each other about their patients and communicating with their patients about their conditions. They will learn to reflect on their actions and those of other members of the health care team. They will refine their understanding of complex procedures and put theory into practice before entering a patient s room or the ER, ICU, OB, or Pediatrics.

Research has shown that simulated scenarios are a highly effective training method for students and healthcare professionals. There is a compelling need for increased collaborative efforts among members of a healthcare team and this can be addressed in the development of learning exercises within the simulation as well. Communication and efficiency between the various members of a team are critical to success and these aspects are often overlooked in other training methods, stated Tiffany Cabibbo, Chief Nursing Officer at Baptist Health Madisonville.

The idea to develop a simulation hospital came two years ago when a team from MCC visited Catawba Community College in North Carolina to learn about their Simulated Hospital that was associated with their Nursing and Allied Health Programs. The faculty shared with MCC how they funded, managed, and used this facility to support their programs and extend learning beyond the classroom and the lab. The MCC Grants Office staff began investigating funding sources for the project and were successful in receiving the Department of Agriculture Delta Regional Authority grant to support moving forward.

Baptist Health Madisonville embraced the concept and found it to be a valuable opportunity for employee training purposes as well. This approach to interprofessional training and the refinement of critical decision-making skills will help MCC and Baptist Health prepare a workforce for the future in health care that is second to none.

The state-of-the-art simulation hospital housed at Baptist Health Madisonville is an asset to our entire region. The use of simulation and collaborative training has been shown to improve the recruitment and retention of healthcare professionals, especially in rural settings. Offering hands-on training to local students as well as continuing education for our own staff is a key benefit of this facility being housed here at Baptist Health, stated Robert Ramey, President of Baptist Health Madisonville. The Interdisciplinary Simulation Hospital is located on the hospital s 5th floor.

MCC Chief Academic Officer Dr. Deborah Cox shared, Unlike most health care situations, we will never really know the patients who are impacted by this facility and this teaching modality. Their lives will go on and they will never know it was because of what we did here. Simulated hospital participants will be better trained and more confident when encountering life threatening occurrences. Sarah Glazebrook, a 3rd semester Respiratory Care program student at MCC, has had the opportunity to participate in a simulation hospital training and described it as real learning with real experience.

Grant funding from the Delta Regional Authority in the amount of $368,484 brought the idea of a simulation hospital to fruition. The new facility features a simulation laboratory, observation room, and debriefing room in which to conduct high-fidelity interprofessional education scenarios involving MCC healthcare students, nurse anesthetist students from the Baptist Health/Murray State University Program of Anesthesia, medical students hosted by the West AHEC, and BHM employees. Planning is underway to host a simulation training in early December on transporting and treating a patient diagnosed with Ebola. Scenarios and assessment instruments will be made available to other rural hospitals and educational institutions that desire to engage in simulation-based interprofessional education.

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