Upstate healthcare training featured in New York TimesDecember 20, 2018
Longer life expectancies and an aging Baby Boomer population have heightened focus on American healthcare in recent years, especially as the number of graduating doctors and nurses fall short of growing needs.
There’s a bright spot on the horizon, thanks to technology altering how medical professionals learn and visionary initiatives reinventing how health care teams collaborate. We’re proud to say the Upstate’s life sciences environment is strong on both fronts.
In a recent exploration entitled, “Training the Next Generation of Doctors and Nurses,” the New York Times wrote about collaborative healthcare training programs from the Upstate, calling out the Greenville Health Care Simulation Center, which is used by the University of South Carolina School of Medicine, Greenville and Clemson University School of Nursing.
The adjoining facilities of USC School of Medicine Greenville and Clemson’s School of Nursing is already a model of interprofessional education, and the industry is taking notice.
See this excerpt:
In replica hospital rooms fitted with bed-bound mannequins programmed to mimic conditions like strokes and seizures, and that can bleed, blink and give birth (there’s even a realistic placenta), students get “deliberate practice,” said Robert Morgan, director of the Greenville Health Care Simulation Center in South Carolina, which is used by the University of South Carolina School of Medicine, Greenville and Clemson University School of Nursing.
Rather than hope to encounter a teaching opportunity in the hospital, Dr. Morgan said, “you come here and start your first 10, 15, 100 I.V.s before you actually have to place one in a patient.”
Instructors have used mannequins for decades to teach CPR. But recently, he said, technology has advanced, giving students the realistic experience of caring for a patient.
Which is what was happening one recent morning at Clemson’s newly opened $31.5-million nursing school on the Greenville campus. From behind two-way mirrors, instructors used consoles to adjust “patient” heart rates and responses to treatments. They spoke into microphones to answer questions.
For students readying for rotations in real clinics, simulations let them rehearse treatment choices, as well as the best ways to talk with patients while treating them. Instructors can create dire circumstances like uncontrolled bleeding (though “nobody dies until senior year” said Jean Ellen Zavertnik, the lab director), or — the case on this morning — a scenario letting students puzzle over when (and when not) to give a patient insulin.
The story chronicles a training simulation while capturing thoughts from the professionals in training on how these scenarios position them for real-life patient interactions. It also mentions a defining characteristic of the University of South Carolina School of Medicine Greenville: that students become become certified emergency medical technicians at the start of their first year and do monthly shifts on an ambulance, which offers “a more complete picture” of patient lives.
With its mention of collaborative initiatives, robust education and training opportunities, and a forward-looking appreciation for technology, this story captures the essence of the Upstate region, and why companies and individuals thrive here.