News Archives: SIM Lab Enhances Nursing Education Program at GPRC
Released: Thursday, June 7th, 2012
GPRC's METIman may not be human, but he is a startlingly realistic patient. He blinks, his pupils dilate and constrict, he has a pulse, body fluids, respiration, even moans and groans. The opportunity to learn nursing skills in a simulated situation before contact with human patients has greatly enhanced nursing education in recent years, and GPRC is delighted to officially open its new Nursing SIM Lab on the Grande Prairie campus.
Renovations have recently been completed, the technology is in place, and a top-of-the line simulation mannequin is now part of the learning experience for students in the Nursing program at GPRC. The College has invested some $260,000 of unrestricted net assets to bring instructional facilities into line with what is now the industry norm.
The highlight of the new SIM Lab is the acquisition of two METIman Nursing Patient Simulators. Each METIman offers realistic clinical experiences for students, exhibiting a variety of symptoms - neurological, respiratory, cardiovascular, gastrointestinal and more - and responses to treatment. METIman's simulation features include body temperature, blood pressure, pupils that automatically dilate and constrict in response to light, spontaneous breathing, heart sounds, and urinary output, to name a few.
Simulation allows realistic training from basic skills to advanced life-saving skills; learners address life-like health issue scenarios without risk to human patients.
"The simulation experience is a fun and engaging experience conducted in a nonthreatening environment," says Sheila Elliott, Chair of Nursing Education at GPRC. "It also provides an opportunity for students to develop competence and confidence in a variety of skills including critical thinking."
"Simulators have become a standard in health teaching labs throughout the system," says Susan Bansgrove, Vice-President Academics and Research. "It is very timely to add this facility to the Nursing Education experience at GPRC. We are proud to provide education here in northwestern Alberta which is second to none, and which fully prepares our graduates for their future employment or advanced study."
Some 40 to 50 students graduate each year from the UofA collaborative Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BScN) degree program at GPRC, and find employment throughout the region and beyond.