News & Events

Simulation Manikins Keep It Real for Nursing Students
Seton Hall > News & Events 

Listening for Chest Sounds on a Simulation Manikin
A nursing student checking for
breath sounds on a manikin.
Simman 3g Sweats
Manikins imitate real-life symptoms
such as sweating.

A group of nursing students leans over a six-year-old child to listen for breath sounds. Nothing. They call a "code" and start chest compressions. Soon, the child's gurgling and crying assure the students that the child has revived.

In another room, a group of nursing students is dealing with a man who is having a seizure. They assess his condition. His pupils are dilated. He is sweating and shaking, and his blood pressure is rising. They administer anti-seizure medication and the crisis is over.

While these may sound like scenes from the latest emergency room drama on TV, they are being played out in Seton Hall lab rooms with nursing students. Thanks to a generous grant from The Healthcare Foundation of New Jersey, the College of Nursing purchased two state-of-the-art simulation manikins, SimMan 3G and SimJunior by Laerdal. The nearly $138,000 grant also funded training on the high-tech manikins for the nursing faculty.

"We at the Healthcare Foundation are acutely aware of the importance of nurses and the role they will play in healthcare in the future," said HFNJ Executive Director Marsha Atkind. "We think training nurses with manikins like SimMan 3G and SimJunior is crucial to their education and to preparing them for their enhanced role in delivering primary care. It is our pleasure to provide some of the funding for this important project."

SimMan 3G is as close to a living human being as technology currently allows. The manikin can sweat, bleed, cry and urinate. It also has a pulse and its blood pressure can be monitored. SimJunior speaks and makes other sounds, and its vital signs can also be monitored.

The use of the manikins allows students to develop critical thinking skills in a clinical setting. They learn to recognize symptoms and take action. The faculty can run the students through a variety of patient scenarios such as heart attack, trauma and pneumonia that nurses encounter every day in their work.

"These simulations replicate training that used to occur in a hospital setting," said Mary Ann Scharf, the director of the patient care simulation laboratories. "Although our nursing students are assigned for learning experiences in critical care and acute care hospital units, they are not always welcome participants in a code situation. With the manikins, we expose students to these cases in a controlled, confidence-boosting environment."

SimMan 3G and SimJunior are the latest simulation manikins added to the nursing program, but their functionality exceeds that of the earlier models. In the near future, the nursing program hopes to add SimMom for students studying labor and delivery nursing and SimNewB to simulate care in a neonatal unit.

For more information please contact:
Mary Ann Scharf
(973) 761-9293


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