LSC-O Nursing Instructors Attend SUN Conference

Lamar State College-Orange nursing program instructors, Jennifer Trotter and Suzanne Baker, attended the 2011 Laerdal Simulation User Network (SUN) Conference in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., in October. Laerdal is the company who produces the SimMan 3G interactive patient simulator, which was purchased by LSC-O in July 2010 with the State of Texas Jobs and Education for Texans Grant. The conference provided the instructors with new and innovating ideas for implementing the Sim Man in the classroom.

After working with the Sim Man for more than a year, LSC-O students have been allowed to perform relevant skill and simulate learning scenarios that may be encountered in real-life situations that they may not have been exposed to during their normal clinical rotations.

“Having the Sim Man allows the students to learn in a safe environment,” said Baker, instructor of the vocational nursing program. “I feel it is an essential part of the learning environment for the students, since our clinical sites are so limited.”

Baker said the SUN Conference showed instructors how to program their own scenarios to use with the Sim Man 3G, in addition to the pre-programmed National League of Nursing scenarios that they already implement. They were given ideas on how to make these scenarios more realistic with the use of media that can be shown on student monitors in the simulation rooms, and with make-up for the Sim Man. Attendees even received a Laerdal recipe book to use to make various medical ailments that patients may have such as vomiting, bleeding, bruising and more.

“We also learned how to make our debriefings better educational opportunities so students can learn from their mistakes in a safe learning environment,” she said. “A debriefing is what we do at the end of each scenario to allow the students the chance to tell about their simulation experience and what they can improve on or learn from.”

Baker, who plans to become certified in Clinical Simulation in the near future, says the conference was a wonderful educational opportunity to be able to network with people from all over the world and exchange views, ideas and experiences with them.

Christus St. Mary Hospital partnered with LSC-O to obtain the Jobs and Education for Texans Grant for the Sim Man 3G (known as “Chris Lamar” to LSC-O nursing students), so it is housed in their facility. Trotter, instructor of the Upward Mobility Nursing program, says being in a hospital setting enhances the experience for students.

“This partnership is a benefit to both LSC-O and Christus St. Mary Hospital,” said Baker, “because we are both able to utilize the Sim Man for training.”