Magazine article Techniques

Simulation Training and Assessment for Medical Procedures

Magazine article Techniques

Simulation Training and Assessment for Medical Procedures

Article excerpt

A GREAT WAY TO GET STUDENTS INTERESTED IN CAREERS IN MEDICINE IS TO UTILIZE SIMULATION to train them in procedures frequently performed in the medical field. Getting students interested in careers in medicine prepares them for high-wage, high-demand careers. According to the United States Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics (2018), employment in healthcare occupations is projected to grow 18 percent from 2016-26, which is much greater than the average for all occupations, adding about 2.4 million new jobs. The median annual wage for healthcare practitioners and technical occupations (such as registered nurses, physicians and dental hygienists) was $64,770 in May 2017, which was, again, higher than the median annual wage for all occupations.

Simulation training exposes students to the day-to-day activities of careers in medicine, connecting their STEM course knowledge with practical skills. Medical simulation training also demonstrates student interest to prospective employers and schools and improves their career readiness. Ideally, students become certified to demonstrate how they have obtained hands-on practical knowledge.

Obstacles

With all of the benefits of medical procedure training, there are also a number of obstacles that can lead to instructor and student frustration. Many career and technical education (CTE) instructors struggle to:

* Determine which procedures are appropriate for simulation

* Find the physical space for simulation

* Decide what equipment is required for simulation

A common mistake simulation centers make is dedicating space and purchasing equipment without knowing exactly how it will be used. This leads to underutilized, or even unutilized, space and equipment.

One of the greatest obstacles is the lack of instructor knowledge and comfort surrounding procedures they may or may not have performed themselves. Additionally, once a student has learned a procedure, the challenge becomes how to prove their proficiency to employers, supervising clinicians, professional schools or colleges. Finally, there is the challenge of funding the equipment, certifications and training. While these obstacles can be daunting, there are solutions available.

Solutions

The medical procedures you choose to teach should strike a balance between those that meet your students' interests and those that fit best with the learning objectives of the courses being taught. Procedures such as hand washing, IV placement and ultrasound are applicable to most medical career paths and in courses that range from "Emergency Medical Response" to "Advanced Placement Biology. …

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