Education Technology Report: Pat Besong working with Penn State Hershey Medical Center doctor on health care simulation
Pat Besong, manager, creative design and development with ETS, has been working with Dr. Leonard Pott, staff physician at Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, on a Flash health care simulation that focuses on intubation decisions. Intubation is the procedure of inserting a tube into the trachea of a patient who is not breathing.
Pat began working with Dr. Pott after this yearâ€™s Symposium for Teaching and Learning with Technology. Dr. Pott gave a presentation on simulations for education and assessment in health care, including both high-tech, realistic dummies and flat screen versions.
The mannequins can be controlled by a technician to simulate various instances of trauma to see how students will react. There are both full body and partial dummies. The partial dummies help students gather the necessary physical skills. The flat-screen simulations, like the one that Pat is working on, help them learn the mental skills. The full dummies test both mental and physical ability, along with assessing how students react to high-pressure situations. The dummies can simulate breathing, emit fluids, make certain sounds, and perform other actions to give the student a very realistic training experience.
Pat is working closely with Dr. Pott and others at the Penn State Hershey Medical Center to develop the Flash simulation on intubation. The simulation gives a patient situation, and then makes the student navigate a series of decisions. If they choose a wrong decision, the simulation will make them try something else to â€œsave the patientâ€.
Pat traveled to the Medical Center in early July to talk with Dr. Pott about the project. He showed the doctor the intubation simulation and described in detail how it worked. Dr. Pott showed Pat some other simulations that they have used, and some were quite complicated.
One of the goals that Dr. Pott wanted to achieve was to create a simulation that was not as complicated to create, and could also be used as a template for other simulations. Patâ€™s work on the intubation simulation was exactly what he had in mind. Once a decision tree with the questions and correct and incorrect answers is created, it was translated into a FileMaker Pro database.
The project is still under development. Pat said that Dr. Pott is gathering the appropriate photos for the Flash simulation and is also securing a server to hold the Filemaker Pro database.
You can track the progress of this project on Patâ€™s blog. You can also see an unfinished version of the Flash simulation. Pat notes that the content is not all there, but you can get the general idea of the simulation. You can see photos of his trip to Hershey here.