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News from the School

School of NursingWest Penn Hospital School of Nursing and its faculty and students make news!  Read about:

"Unfolding Case Study" Research with NLN

At the invitation of the National League for Nursing (NLN), The Western Pennsylvania Hospital School of Nursing and the Simulation, Teaching and Academic Research (STAR) Center at West Penn Allegheny Health System participated in a research project during November 2010 called the “Unfolding Case Study.” The project, a partnership of the NLN and the Community College of Philadelphia (CCP) that is funded by The John A. Hartford Foundation, Laerdal Medical and the Independence Foundation, is designed to help nursing school faculty develop and implement simulation tools for teaching and learning.

Faculty for West Penn’s Nursing 302 course selected the “unfolding case” of elderly Mr. “Red" Yoder to pilot for the NLN/CCP study. On their appointed day, each group of about six students gathered in STAR’s conference room where their instructors gave an overview of the project, which involved three simulated clinical scenarios. Each scenario was preceded by a discussion of the nurse's role and followed by a debriefing/guided reflection discussion.

The first scenario was Red Yoder’s first-person monologue 'recorded from home' in which he describes the complex health problems he is facing. After pre-discussion of the second scenario, Mr. Yoder's visit to the Emergency Department, the students moved to Mr. Yoder’s bedside in the STAR Center, where they engaged in a simulated "emergency department" scenario. The third scenario was “pre-discharge from the hospital."

The scenarios’ goals are to give students practice assessing the older patient’s function and expectations using valid and reliable assessment tools, recognize atypical presentations in the older adult, identify geriatric syndromes evident in the unfolding case, use emerging evidence and best practices to develop and implement a plan of care, and make appropriate judgments regarding the risks and benefits of care decisions, in collaboration with the interdisciplinary team and the patient and significant others.

"Each of the three scenarios required students to use a different set of clinical and communication skills," said Ms. Robinson. "I think that the most creative aspect of this experience was the 'Finish the Story' assignment, in which students were to project Red three months into the future and write about his outcome. Students have gotten very creative with this assignment."

In the Spring 2013 NSG 103 course, faculty piloted one of 4 new unfolding case studies for the NLN,  the case of "Butch Sampson," another elderly veteran.


CPR/BLS National Research Project

How do RN students best learn and remember Basic Life Support (BLS; “CPR”) knowledge and skills? West Penn Hospital School of Nursing helped answer this question through participation in a national research project.

The study was sponsored by the National League for Nursing (NLN); the American Heart Association (AHA); and Laerdal, the manufacturer of advanced clinical training manikins such as Sim Man and the many others in the Simulation, Teaching and Academic Research ( STAR) Center located on the School of Nursing's first floor.

West Penn was the only diploma school of the 10 participating schools, selected from among 34 applicants. 

The West Penn effort was led by Carol Haus, PhD, RN, CNE, Director, who co-authored the poster and a nursing journal article reporting the results.

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