Medicine curriculum facilitates students’ literacy initiative

This year, UBC faculty of medicine has changed its curriculum to include a mandatory FLEX Program that encourages medical students to engage with meaningful research, community projects or volunteer work.

Previously known as the Self-Directed Practicum Option (SDPO), the FLEX program focuses on providing opportunities and time for medical students to pursue their interests more holistically. It also offers students the ability to continue working on projects previously developped under SDPO.

For instance, The Reading Bear Society (RBS) was spearheaded by former medical students, Isabel Chen and Joanne Roussey, as part of SDPO and is now offered to students in the FLEX program.

RBS focuses on promoting literacy to young children in Vancouver.

Victoria Baronas, a FLEX student representative and current MD/PhD Candidate, reflected on her experiences pursuing the Reading Bear project.

“In my year, a few students got together to work on creating the My Bear Book and [it] was given to kindergarteners. It’s an activity book that they do with high school students during each visit,” said Baronas. “Every visit has its own theme ... and they do different activities.”

Now, she is working to expand the program’s goals with a module more related to medicine that familiarizes the process of health care and doctors to kindergarteners.

Another expansion could also come in the form of an official club recognition (from the AMS?). A similar project was started at Simon Fraser University last year, and Baronas noted that its success has inspired her and her team to apply for club status at UBC.

“Two students who were with us, both in fourth year, took the initiative to start the club and clearly took it to a very high level,” she said. “They recruited a bunch of people, they had staff committees, they put on events, raised a lot of money and raised thousands of books.”

Currently, the Reading Bear Club is still waiting for approval from the AMS.

Its president, Santiago Perez, noted that the club will focus on charity and aim to raise awareness on the lack of promotion of literacy to underprivileged youth in Vancouver.

“In Vancouver and BC generally, we have one of the highest rates of child poverty which means this specific group often has little to no access to reading supplies,” he said. “When they start school and classes, they start far behind so the purpose of the club is to promote it in order to create a lasting impact.”

It will also be open to all undergraduate students, despite its start in the medical student’s community.

Source: https://www.ubyssey.ca/news/flex-program-reading-bear/

Studying Medicine in Time of War

It was September 2011 when Hasan Raad was admitted to the medical school at Al-Baath University in Homs, Syria.

The city was at the center of the uprising that led to Syria’s continuing civil war, and conditions there were already starting to deteriorate, as violence flared between government troops and armed opponents. The university, next to the Baba Amr neighborhood, one of the most affected parts of the city, kept classes going, but had to make accommodations for the many students who found it difficult to attend.

Six years later, Homs is calm, though much of it has been destroyed. Raad didn’t leave the city during the years of fighting, and last month he took the national final exam to graduate from medical school.

“The first year at college was very difficult,” he said. “We weren’t attending classes and we couldn’t do the first-semester exams.”

The war has caused a massive shortage of medical equipment, doctors, medicine and electricity throughout Syria. Physicians for Human Rights, a New York-based non-governmental organization, estimates that nearly 800 medical personnel have been killed. Over half of Syria’s 30,000 doctors are thought to have left the country since the conflict began. Many medical-school students have dropped out.

Hamoud Hamid, dean of the medical school at the University of Damascus, told a local newspaper in May of this year that 100 out of 400 students had left the school. Some 450 students graduated from the university in 2015, according to the official Syrian news agency.

When Raad and his classmates began their studies, the fighting in Homs was intensifying. In November 2011, the government of President Bashar Al-Assad began a bombing campaign on rebel-held areas. In early 2012, government troops conducted a month-long siege that quashed a rebel stronghold in the Baba Amr neighborhood.

By the summer of 2012, although parts of Homs were still either under siege or scarred by battle, the situation was improving, and the medical school was able to hold its second-semester exams, despite the disruptions in classes.

“There was a lot of flexibility,” said Raad. “Very few students were attending classes, and professors allowed us to do exams without completing the practical modules.” Students strove to master the required material, he said, but “we were completely on our own.”

In the second year for Raad’s entering class, students who lived in the city could attend classes, but the roads were not secure enough to travel for those living in nearby villages and towns.

To help those who couldn’t attend the exams, Syrian universities temporarily allowed students to pass the school year with a higher number of failed classes.

Students at Syrian universities normally take 12 classes in an academic year. Before the war, the maximum number of classes a student could fail and still pass to the next academic year was four, but in October 2011, a law was passed that allowed students to complete the year with six, and later eight, failed classes. Although the students were allowed to progress, they needed to circle back and complete some of the classes they had failed. An additional summer term was added to help students pass failed classes.

“Students were given opportunities to do more exams,” said Michel Nicola, the administrative vice president at Al-Baath University. “Students who were living in besieged areas and couldn’t apply for universities were allowed to register one or two years after their baccalaureate,” Nicola said, referring to the national high-school exit exam.

In another accommodation, students from Al-Baath, Aleppo, and Al-Furat Universities were allowed to attend classes at safer campuses during times when their universities were being shelled. Thousands of students from those universities temporarily moved to the capital, Damascus, or to Lattakia, on the coast, where classes never stopped, due to the more secure situation in those cities.

“Those exceptions are gradually being removed as the security situation improves in Syria,” said Nicola.

Since last year, the maximum number of classes students could fail was decreased to six and later to five.

Even in Aleppo, where rebel-held sectors suffered devastating bombardments during a four-year siege and the United Nations warned of “a complete meltdown of humanity” as government troops and their allies took back the city last December, university students are now back in their campuses.

In Homs, after the National Hospital became a battlefield in 2012 and later was destroyed, medical students were left without a teaching hospital where they could do their practical training. To keep the development of future doctors moving, the university made agreements with private hospitals in the city to take students for the clinical portion of their education.

Under those conditions, said Raad, “There were two types of students: some who would take the initiative and connect with doctors for training, and some who just went with the lack of the training the university was suffering from, and did nothing.”

Raad volunteered in the emergency room of a private hospital in the city during the worst years of war, before attending the practical classes that were reopened in his senior year.

Because of the exceptions granted at some universities during the war and variations in curricula, Syria recently introduced standardized final exams that students must pass before graduating in medicine and five other practical majors: architecture, dentistry, informatics engineering, nursing and pharmaceutical studies.

Many students complained about having to pass an additional requirement before graduating. One of the arguments against the test was that the different curricula at different universities didn’t allow students to be on the same knowledge level when they came to take the national exam.

But advocates say the exam has pushed students to learn on their own, despite the disruptions caused by the war.

Maysoun Dashash, head of the higher-education ministry’s Center for Measurement and Evaluation, said in a television interview last May that the standardized tests had “proved to be a safety valve for the student, the university, the teaching programs and the professors.”

“The faculties through the crisis period were burdened with teaching responsibilities,” Dashash said. “We need to enforce a self-education culture among our students, and we’re doing so through the standardized exam.”

The national exam was very difficult for Raad, and he said that with his score it would be tough for him to get into the advanced programs he wants, in either cardiac or respiratory medicine.

“My score was worse than I expected. The questions were badly formulated,” Raad said. He wasn’t alone in his disappointment. Only one of nine friends who also took the exam scored an excellent grade, he said.

Local news media reported that the number of students who achieved an excellent score dropped by 89 percent this year, compared with the previous year. More than 500 students out of the 2,432 who took the exam at all of the Syrian medical schools failed it.

Confused by the questions, the students asked the measurement center, which administers the test, for the answer key to try to find out what they had done wrong. But the director of the center said that would be impossible.

With the general low performance on this year’s test, Raad is hoping that the university will lower the requirements for clinical specialties so students will have better chance at studying in their chosen fields.

Like hundreds of medical students who have left Syria in the past few years to study in Europe, mainly in Germany, going abroad could be an option for Raad—if he could afford it. But in the near future, as a full-time medical resident in Syria, he will be making 30,000 Syrian pounds a month, or less than $70, the bare minimum needed to survive in Syria.

After four or five years of residency, Raad thinks the financial future for doctors in Syria will be better.

“The quantity and the quality of doctors have decreased, with many physicians leaving the country,” Raad said. “With such a shortage, a doctor could still live well in Syria if he makes a bright name.”

Source: https://www.al-fanarmedia.org/2017/10/studying-medicine-time-war/

Five outstanding ASU students chosen to attend Mayo medical conference

With government leaders still undecided on the subject of national health care and the fate of millions of Americans hanging in the balance, the Mayo Clinic Center for Innovation held its annual Transform 2017 conference in late September at its headquarters in Rochester, Minnesota.

Five Arizona State University students were selected to attend and be privy to a series of talks, debates and networking sessions with some of the world’s leading health-care professionals.

ASU and the Mayo Clinic have been working together for 12 years on programs that range from nursing to medical imaging to regenerative and rehabilitative medicine to wearable biosensors.

Last fall, the duo formalized their partnership through the creation of the Mayo Clinic and Arizona State University Alliance for Health Care, and earlier this summer, Mayo Clinic School of Medicine welcomed its first cohort of 50 students in Scottsdale. Students at the Scottsdale campus are guided by a jointly developed curriculum focused on the science of health care delivery, taught by both ASU and Mayo Clinic faculty.

David Sklar, senior adviser and professor at ASU’s School for the Science of Health Care Delivery, also attended Transform 2017. An accomplished MD, Sklar came to ASU by way of the University of New Mexico, where he served as program director for the emergency medicine residency, chair of the emergency department, senior associate dean for clinical affairs and, most recently, associate dean for graduate medical education.

Sklar is also the author or co-author of more than 150 articles in medical literature on topics such as medical error, quality improvement, medical education, international health, and literature and medicine, and he serves as editor-in-chief of Academic Medicine, the leading journal in medical education, sponsored by the Association of American Medical Colleges.

“More and more [in health care], we’re bringing in knowledge from other related fields,” Sklar said to the students as they gathered for lunch one day during the conference. “Psychology, anthropology, bioengineering. Lots of different places.

“I think one of the really unique things about Mayo is that everybody really works together and there’s great collaboration. And one of the really great things about ASU is there are so many different areas that we train people in, and I think there’s real opportunity to bring all of that into health care.”

Read on to learn more about the students chosen to attend, what they think of ASU and Mayo’s approach to health care and health-care education, and what role they hope to play in it all.

Daniel Nguyen — Biomedical Sciences, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences; Barrett, The Honors College; Flinn Scholar

Daniel Nguyen always knew he wanted to help people for a living. So during high school, he signed up for an EMT program — and hated it.

“I thought medicine wasn’t for me,” he said. “The hours were bad, some of the patients [were difficult]. Everything was pretty rough.”

Then came “that one call.” Nguyen’s team was responding to a report of a young girl who had been attacked by a dog. When they pulled up in the firetruck, her mother ran out to them and exclaimed, “Thank God you’re here!”

“That one line, that ‘Thank God you’re here,’ that made me go, this is worth it,” he said. They helped the girl to the hospital, where she eventually recovered, and Nguyen started his medical journey anew.

As a freshman at ASU, he studies biomedical science and volunteers at the Student Health Outreach for Wellness clinic (SHOW), a tri-university, student-led initiative providing free health care and education for individuals experiencing homelessness in Phoenix.

A major theme at Transform 2017 was the social determinants of health. At SHOW, Nguyen said, a lot of the patients “just happen to be caught in bad circumstances and … because of that, their health suffers. … So it’s good that we have places like [SHOW] to help them.”

He found the conference and the overall spirit of the Mayo Clinic to be very inspiring.

“Mayo Clinic truly puts the needs of patients first,” he said. “And that’s really amazing.”

Randall Arroyo — Kinesiology, College of Health Solutions; Barrett, The Honors College

Randall Arroyo comes from a law-enforcement family, with a father who has 30 years in the field. He figured it’s what he’d do too, until he volunteered in the emergency department of a hospital as a sophomore in high school.

“I’ll never forget, my first day, we had a code
within maybe the first 20 minutes that I was there,” he said.

“I had no idea what was happening, I just stood in the back watching. Unfortunately, the lady didn’t make it.”

Arroyo was deeply affected by what he saw but was heartened at the sight of so many doctors and nurses coming together in what he called an “organized chaos” to do everything they could to help someone. That was the moment that put him on the path toward medicine.

Nowadays, he’s a junior at ASU studying kinesiology and working as a scribe for emergency medicine doctors at Banner Estrella and Banner Desert Medical Center in Phoenix. He follows the doctors throughout their shifts, sitting in the room with the patients and observing the entire treatment process.

“I love every second of it,” Arroyo said. “I’ve learned more in the last five months that I’ve been doing it than I could have ever imagined.”

Alicia Darwin — Biochemistry, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences; Barrett, The Honors College

Alicia Darwin had never heard of Transborder Chicana/o and Latina/o Studies before coming to ASU, but now the biochemistry senior is minoring in the subject. She wants to use what she learns to address minority health care and reduce health-care disparities.

“I don’t think that we currently do a good job of giving people treatment that fits into their culture or way of life,” Darwin said. “If you just try to solve the problem that’s immediately at hand, you’re not taking [the whole person] into consideration, and you have to treat the whole person as opposed to just their disease.”

As a student at ASU, she was able to shadow an oncologist at the Mayo campus in Scottsdale.

“Something I noticed [there] was that they did a really good job of that [a more holistic approach],” she said, recalling cancer patients who reported seeing dieticians and going to support groups in addition to their medical treatment.

Darwin hopes to one day work at a Mayo facility herself.

“I just really like the atmosphere of the Mayo Clinic,” she said. “Giving patients that kind of support is really important.”

Julia Lorence — Biomedical Sciences, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences; Barrett, The Honors College

Julia Lorence was born and raised in Germany. Her first love was dance, and she received a degree in ballet and a minor in dance therapy. Then she suffered a stroke.

She had complained of symptoms to her local doctors, but they always told her the same thing: There was nothing wrong. After her stroke, doctors at an overseas military hospital operated by the U.S. were able to treat her. Afterward, she decided to pursue medicine in America.

Now a junior in biomedical sciences at ASU, Lorence is conducting research on brain tumors at the Mayo campus in Scottsdale and has become enamored with the medical facility and its unique approach to health care.

“I felt like I was just a number with my original doctors,” Lorence said of her experience with her stroke. “If they had been more diligent, maybe that wouldn’t have happened to me.”

The Mayo Clinic, she feels, is diligent and so much more.

“I would love to attend the Mayo Clinic School of Medicine,” she said. “I love the teamwork. Having shadowed different physicians, you can see the collaboration. I shadowed at different hospitals where there’s a lack of teamwork and collaboration. [At Mayo] you can really sense that there’s a family and a unity for the best of the patient.”

Megan Feith — Doctor of Nursing Practice, pediatric emphasis, College of Nursing and Health Innovation

Megan Feith is one of only six graduate students in the pediatric nursing specialty program at ASU’s College of Nursing and Health Innovation. Children’s health care has always been her passion.

“I only do kids,” she said with a laugh.

Feith also completed her bachelor’s in nursing at ASU, meaning she has spent a lot of time doing clinical work at various medical facilities in the Valley.

“ASU builds such strong relationships and partnerships with the surrounding community, that’s why people want their students,” she said. “They know they’re good.”

Having just passed her nursing license exams last month, Feith is excited to get started in the field. Something she learned from Mayo that she plans to bring with her is “how to build meaningful relationships with patients.”

Top photo: ASU students (from left) Megan Feith, Julia Lorence, Daniel Nguyen, Alicia Darwin and Randall Arroyo. Photo by Grace O'Sullivan

Source: https://asunow.asu.edu/20171009-solutions-five-outstanding-asu-students-chosen-attend-mayo-medical-conference

Daniel Nguyen — Biomedical Sciences, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences; Barrett, The Honors College; Flinn Scholar

Daniel Nguyen always knew he wanted to help people for a living. So during high school, he signed up for an EMT program — and hated it.

“I thought medicine wasn’t for me,” he said. “The hours were bad, some of the patients [were difficult]. Everything was pretty rough.”

Then came “that one call.” Nguyen’s team was responding to a report of a young girl who had been attacked by a dog. When they pulled up in the firetruck, her mother ran out to them and exclaimed, “Thank God you’re here!”

“That one line, that ‘Thank God you’re here,’ that made me go, this is worth it,” he said. They helped the girl to the hospital, where she eventually recovered, and Nguyen started his medical journey anew.

As a freshman at ASU, he studies biomedical science and volunteers at the Student Health Outreach for Wellness clinic (SHOW), a tri-university, student-led initiative providing free health care and education for individuals experiencing homelessness in Phoenix.

A major theme at Transform 2017 was the social determinants of health. At SHOW, Nguyen said, a lot of the patients “just happen to be caught in bad circumstances and … because of that, their health suffers. … So it’s good that we have places like [SHOW] to help them.”

He found the conference and the overall spirit of the Mayo Clinic to be very inspiring.

“Mayo Clinic truly puts the needs of patients first,” he said. “And that’s really amazing.”

Randall Arroyo — Kinesiology, College of Health Solutions; Barrett, The Honors College

Randall Arroyo comes from a law-enforcement family, with a father who has 30 years in the field. He figured it’s what he’d do too, until he volunteered in the emergency department of a hospital as a sophomore in high school.

“I’ll never forget, my first day, we had a code within maybe the first 20 minutes that I was there,” he said.

“I had no idea what was happening, I just stood in the back watching. Unfortunately, the lady didn’t make it.”

Arroyo was deeply affected by what he saw but was heartened at the sight of so many doctors and nurses coming together in what he called an “organized chaos” to do everything they could to help someone. That was the moment that put him on the path toward medicine.

Nowadays, he’s a junior at ASU studying kinesiology and working as a scribe for emergency medicine doctors at Banner Estrella and Banner Desert Medical Center in Phoenix. He follows the doctors throughout their shifts, sitting in the room with the patients and observing the entire treatment process.

“I love every second of it,” Arroyo said. “I’ve learned more in the last five months that I’ve been doing it than I could have ever imagined.”

Alicia Darwin — Biochemistry, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences; Barrett, The Honors College

Alicia Darwin had never heard of Transborder Chicana/o and Latina/o Studies before coming to ASU, but now the biochemistry senior is minoring in the subject. She wants to use what she learns to address minority health care and reduce health-care disparities.

“I don’t think that we currently do a good job of giving people treatment that fits into their culture or way of life,” Darwin said. “If you just try to solve the problem that’s immediately at hand, you’re not taking [the whole person] into consideration, and you have to treat the whole person as opposed to just their disease.”

As a student at ASU, she was able to shadow an oncologist at the Mayo campus in Scottsdale.

“Something I noticed [there] was that they did a really good job of that [a more holistic approach],” she said, recalling cancer patients who reported seeing dieticians and going to support groups in addition to their medical treatment.

Darwin hopes to one day work at a Mayo facility herself.

“I just really like the atmosphere of the Mayo Clinic,” she said. “Giving patients that kind of support is really important.”

Julia Lorence — Biomedical Sciences, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences; Barrett, The Honors College

Julia Lorence was born and raised in Germany. Her first love was dance, and she received a degree in ballet and a minor in dance therapy. Then she suffered a stroke.

She had complained of symptoms to her local doctors, but they always told her the same thing: There was nothing wrong. After her stroke, doctors at an overseas military hospital operated by the U.S. were able to treat her. Afterward, she decided to pursue medicine in America.

Now a junior in biomedical sciences at ASU, Lorence is conducting research on brain tumors at the Mayo campus in Scottsdale and has become enamored with the medical facility and its unique approach to health care.

“I felt like I was just a number with my original doctors,” Lorence said of her experience with her stroke. “If they had been more diligent, maybe that wouldn’t have happened to me.”

The Mayo Clinic, she feels, is diligent and so much more.

“I would love to attend the Mayo Clinic School of Medicine,” she said. “I love the teamwork. Having shadowed different physicians, you can see the collaboration. I shadowed at different hospitals where there’s a lack of teamwork and collaboration. [At Mayo] you can really sense that there’s a family and a unity for the best of the patient.”

Megan Feith — Doctor of Nursing Practice, pediatric emphasis, College of Nursing and Health Innovation

Megan Feith is one of only six graduate students in the pediatric nursing specialty program at ASU’s College of Nursing and Health Innovation. Children’s health care has always been her passion.

“I only do kids,” she said with a laugh.

Feith also completed her bachelor’s in nursing at ASU, meaning she has spent a lot of time doing clinical work at various medical facilities in the Valley.

“ASU builds such strong relationships and partnerships with the surrounding community, that’s why people want their students,” she said. “They know they’re good.”

Having just passed her nursing license exams last month, Feith is excited to get started in the field. Something she learned from Mayo that she plans to bring with her is “how to build meaningful relationships with patients.”

Top photo: ASU students (from left) Megan Feith, Julia Lorence, Daniel Nguyen, Alicia Darwin and Randall Arroyo. Photo by Grace O'Sullivan

Students use design thinking to fix broken care processes

Health system failures contribute to physician burnout, but medical education often does a poor job of giving students the tools they will need to make meaningful changes as physicians. However, a joint effort between Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University and Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) students aims to train future physicians in design thinking to help identify and repair system issues.

This kind of thinking is taught in a course, “Design+Health,” an educational collaboration for medical and design students to tackle health care challenges. The course is designed to reduce burnout by supporting students in designing projects that improve health systems.

“Brown is teaching medical education students about the American health care system and the challenges we face,” said Yao Liu, a third-year medical student at Brown. “Training future physicians in design thinking is a way to help them diagnose and treat system issues.”

Medical education courses often focus more on problems rather than solutions, but Design+Health looks to change that. By pairing medical students at Brown with design students at RISD, this program strives to encourage critical thinking, creativity and innovative solutions for the promotion of individual and community health. Liu presented on design thinking at the AMA ChangeMedEd™ 2017 National Conference.

Design+Health began in fall 2013, as an attempt to draw upon the unique strengths of medical and design students. The course allowed students to follow a physician or other “users” in the health care system to determine a health care problem from their perspective, rather than just making assumptions.

“We don’t start with preconceived notions of what the problem is,” he said.

After defining the problem, students brainstorm innovative ideas that may provide a solution to the system issue. This process draws upon the same skills students are already learning in medical school, beginning with a thorough interview and examination with the patient followed by empathizing with the patient’s situation and understanding the problems they are solving before jumping to any treatment. Students then prototype their ideas and refine them based on user feedback, embarking on an iterative process of testing and refining.

“With each iteration, your ideas become honed down. Your understanding of the problem gets deeper and your solutions get better,” Liu said.

“Design thinking adds another layer to the physician’s mindset that problems, even systems issues, can be addressed if we’re bold enough to understand the causes of these failures and attempt solutions to them,” he added.  

Students will participate in these pre-clinical electives over the course of a semester, with teams responsible for meeting on their own time to complete shadowing and other necessary work. In 2016, the pre-clinical elective had its largest enrollment yet—40 total students—split between medical and design students. The program will remain at this size until full-time faculty can become more involved.

Design thinking helps physicians expand their conceptions of what they can accomplish. In doing so, the hope is that when they encounter system failures in the future, they won’t feel hopeless.

Through interdisciplinary, team-based project work, students gain a hands-on experience applying design in clinical settings. Students choose one of four project tracks from emergency medicine, surgery, the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) and primary care. Once in these tracks, students focus on an issue of their own choosing. This allows students to take project ownership from start to finish of the design process, with mentor support.

Relieving the physician’s load—literally

By observing and shadowing health care providers or patients in real clinical settings, students will focus on a single user, such as the physician, to define a problem.

“Projects have tackled issues like patient wait times in clinics, operating room ergonomics and NICU phlebotomy safety,” Liu said.

One team began with the goal of reducing surgeon back pain and developed an assistive device to help support surgeons after standing long hours in the operating room (OR). The team of students conducted interviews with surgeons, watched their interactions in the OR and looked at other products already on the market to develop the deepest understanding of the problems faced by surgeons.

“They realized that few solutions had been developed with surgeons’ comfort at the forefront,” said Liu. “Therefore, they made surgeons’ comfort their top priority in designing their solutions.”

To find a solution, the students went into design workshops, came up with different assistive devices and went back to the surgeons to get feedback to come up with their final version. 

“Projects like this, if successful, can do things like save surgeons’ backs,” Liu said. “They can make patients more satisfied with their clinic visits.”

“However, even if projects like this don’t make it past the prototyping stage—which many did not—they teach students and future physicians that the challenges nagging our health care system are not impossible to change,” he added.

The course culminates in a pitch or critique session that lays the foundation for long-term research and implementation. With health care rapidly evolving, Liu states that medical education must train future physicians to shape it, which can be completed through design thinking.

“Physician burnout and system failures do not have to be things we accept,” he said. “They cannot be things we accept.”

Design thinking is a “crucial first step toward empowering tomorrow’s physicians to change health care systems,” said Liu.


Source: https://wire.ama-assn.org/education/students-use-design-thinking-fix-broken-care-processes

Spectrum Health opens new heart education center

Spectrum Health has opened a new cardiac simulation and education center.

The purpose of the Jacob and Lois Mol Cardiovascular Simulation Center is to simulate realistic procedures for structural heart, heart catheter and vascular surgical interventions, MLive reported.

A simulation center sets up a practice test to train professionals.

Dr. Robert Cuff is a vascular surgeon and director of the new center. He compared the idea of a simulation center to sports in the way it takes practice and hand-eye coordination to get good at sewing up a heart or artery.

Cuff said he can take a CAT scan of a patient and make a 3-D model of it at the center. He can then practice with the model before working on an actual patient.

With this method, Cuff can see complications that could potentially arise and risk the patient’s life or health. This method can’t be done with every health problem, but Cuff said it has been used to help treat aneurysms.

The center’s amenities also include classrooms with a video system that allows surgeries to be broadcast to observers in the room. Cuff said this is beneficial for exposing large numbers of nursing personnel to surgery because a class of 20 to 50 people can see what’s going on in the operating room.

Cuff said he hopes the center will increase medical cooperation in the area and that he wants to help build collaborations with medical education programs.

Source: http://fox17online.com/2017/10/08/spectrum-health-opens-new-heart-education-center/