Equipment and Resources
Equipment and resources available at the STAR Center include our "virtual hospital" environment with several training rooms, numerous manikin simulators and task trainers, and a host of other equipment to simulate a wide variety of patient care scenarios.
In addition to resources at the STAR Center, our Mobile STAR program allows STAR simulation specialists to bring manikins and other resources to Health System educators' locations for onsite education and training.
The following sections describe STAR Center resources for learning through simulation:
- Standardized Simulation Patient (SP) Program
- Training Rooms
- Task Trainers
- Other Equipment
- Other Resources
The STAR Center's standardized simulation patient (SP) program involves the use of live actors - individuals trained to portray the roles of patients, family members, or others - in simulations of interpersonal interactions. The SP program is especially helpful for teaching/learning/practicing/testing communication skills, such as history-taking, patient teaching, difficult communications such as a diagnosis of cancer, and end-of-life care.
The use of SPs is becoming the gold standard of undergraduate and graduate medical education.
Because the STAR Center is a virtual hospital, we offer a unique format to train healthcare professionals using our SP program. Our SP program allows educators to evaluate medical and nursing students as they practice and improve their communication and history-taking skills. SP encounters allow students to learn to handle situations they may not yet be prepared to manage alone in a real clinical setting or in which learning with real patients may be inappropriate. In addition, SP patients may be more reliable and more tolerant of student learners than real patients.
Our SPs use a checklist to record the details of the encounter and provide feedback to the learner.
SPs are also used extensively in testing of clinical skills, for example, for medical student Objective Structured Clinical Examinations (OSCEs).
Obstetrics and gynecology physicians, residents, nurses and students make extensive use of STAR’s Labor and Delivery Room with Birthing Noelle and SimNewB mannikins to practice and test procedures and skills.
STAR’s Galaxy Wing, opened in the fall of 2011, simulates an entire hospital wing. Individual rooms can be used as patient rooms to simulate ‘a day in the life’ of physicians, medical students, nurses or other hospital staff. It can be used to reflect the patient/ family experience from admission to discharge.
Nurses, physicians and respiratory therapists eagerly awaited the September 2008 opening of STAR’s Neonatal Intensive Care Room and the arrival of Rudy, the premature baby mannikin. Rudy really ‘comes to life’ when it’s time to teach and test neonatal resuscitation skills. Caregivers practice the resuscitation protocol on Rudy until they’re perfect, ensuring optimal outcomes for the thousands of real babies cared for in West Penn Hospital’s Newborn Nurseries and Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.
STAR’s NICU also features a rocking chair, cuddly toys and appealing nursery decor, and by switching isolettes, it can be used to teach healthy newborn care.
STAR’s Intensive Care Unit often hosts mock ‘code’ – cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) – training for teams of healthcare practitioners or students.
The STAR Center has a Conference Room with audiovisual capability for pre- and postsimulation conferences and class presentations.
The following rooms are available for clinical simulations:
- Ambulance Simulator
- Birthing Suite
- Medical-Surgical and Critical Care Simulation Lab
- Control Room
- 2 Full-Size Simulation Rooms
- Hand washing Station with simulated germs
- Nurses Station
- 5 Simulation Stations
- Teaching Station
- Neonatal Intensive Care Suite
Harvey, The Cardiopulmonary Patient Simulator - Available features include 6 breath sound areas, 9 cardiac auscultation areas, 30 cardiac diseases, and speaker for history-taking. Interactive computer link to UMedic saves instructor time. Available learning environments include self-learning (linked with UMedic), instructor-led in small group sessions, and lecture settings.
Gaumard Birthing Noelle - Features include intubation capability, lung sounds, chest rises, heart sounds, pulses, blood pressure, voice/speaking, touch screen monitor, Cesarean section abdomen, birthing baby.
Laerdal ALS Manikin - Available features include "difficult airway" settings, intubation, lung sounds, chest rises, heart sounds, pulses, blood pressure, abdominal sounds, pupil kit (3 sets of pupil sizes), voice/speaking.
Laerdal MegaCode Kid - Available features include intubation, lung sounds, heart sounds, pulses, abdominal sounds, and voice/speaking.
Laerdal Nurse Anne Manikins - The STAR Center has four (4) Nurse Anne manikins. Available features include intubation, lung sounds, heart sounds, pulses, blood pressure, abdominal sounds, extra abdomen(with 3 openings), red stoma, voice/speaking, and blank/male/female genitalia parts.
Laerdal SimMan Manikins - The STAR Center has two (2) SimMan manikins. Available features include "difficult airway" settings, intubation capability, lung sounds, chest rises, heart sounds, pulses, blood pressure, pulse oximetry, abdominal sounds, pupil kit (3 sets of pupil sizes), voice/speaking, touch screen monitor, and blank/male/female genitalia parts.
Laerdal SimMan3G Manikin - Available features include "difficult airway" settings, cyanosis, intubation capability, lung compliance/resistance, lung sounds, chest rises, heart sounds, pulses, blood pressure, pulse oximetry, abdominal sounds, eyelid functionality, pupil functionality, voice/speaking, IV injection capability, blank/male/female genitalia parts, convulsions, secretions, CPR feedback, RFID tags, wound kit, and touch screen monitor.
Laerdal SimNewB Manikin - Available features include intubation capability, lung sounds, chest rises, heart sounds, pulses, blood pressure, umbilical cord, cyanosis, voice/speaking, touch screen monitor, and pupil kit (3 sets of pupil sizes).
RealCare Baby - The world’s most advanced infant simulator. It’s used for teen pregnancy prevention, child development education, career training, prenatal visits and appointments, at-risk youth intervention, and more. Shaken Baby is powerful simulator that cries, and when shaken, LEDs in the brain light up to show areas where brain damage can occur. Drug-Affected Baby covers the potential physical and mental health effects on an infant of drug use during pregnancy, emits the cry of a drug-affected baby and demonstrates withdrawal tremors. Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Baby graphically illustrates the physical effects of drinking while pregnant on an infant.
The STAR Center has numerous partial body and task trainers, such as TraumaMan, and a Wound Care Kit with 21 available simulations.
Task trainers include the following:
TraumaMan is an anatomically correct human simulator with all the pertinent landmarks for locating each procedure. There is no translation required from animal anatomy to human anatomy and all organs required for each procedure are included. TraumaMan assists with skill development for:
- Chest Tube Insertion
- Needle Decompression
- Percutaneous Tracheostomy
- Diagnostic Peritoneal Lavage
- IV Cutdown
Wound Care Kit
Simulations available with the STAR Center's Wound Care kit include the following:
Healthcare equipment in the STAR Center includes the following:
Six of the patient care beds in the STAR Center are equipped with the following:
- Welch Allyn BP Cuff
- Welch Allyn Otoscope
- Welch Allyn Ophthalmoscope
- Welch Allyn Ear Probe Set
- Wall O2
- Suction Setup
The STAR Center also offers the following 'virtual hospital' resources:
- Medical Records Access
- Hospital Sounds
- Laptop Computers (2) for participant use (Conference room)
- Pyxis System
- Simulated Blood