Simulation training center opened in Ternopil State Medical University

A meeting of the academic council of Ternopil State Medical University which took place on September 27 was also an occasion for the grand opening of the new simulation training center, located in  the 3 Chekhov building. Implementation of the simulation center project underscores the commitment of TSMU administration to brining the most advanced global technologies into the academic process, allowing students to gain practical medical experience. The students already started using the simulation training center at the beginning  of the academic year. The center will further develop and will ultimately be used not only for training students, but also law enforcement officers, police,  volunteer corps, etc.

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The rector of Ternopil State Medical University Professor Mykhaylo Korda pointed out that developing and implementing this projects took efforts of many people and organizations. In particular, significant contribution to creating of this training center was made by the vice-rector for research, academic and clinical work, Professor Stepan Zaporozhan and scientific consultant, the Head of the Department of Disaster and Military Medicine, Professor Arsen Hudyma.

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When training and working on perfecting certain manual skills, medical students do not always have the opportunity to perform a large number of manipulations, since they lack specific patients, and there are ethical and deontological limitations to the relationship between students and patients. A simulation training center helps to solve this problem, which in turn promotes learning and development of different clinical skills through the use of mannequins, simulators and standardized patients.

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Simulators available at the center will allow the students to master  techniques of auscultation of heart and respiratory sounds, both normal and pathological, in adults and children; gynecological examination; childbirth with examination of the uterine wall; cardiopulmonary and cerebral resuscitation (individually and as a team) ensuring airflow through the mouth and nose, use of laryngeal mask, cricothyrotomy, ventilation with Ambu bag; heart monitoring of the patient and external defibrillation with automatic and manual defibrillators; temwork in the operating room; intramuscular, intravenous, subcutaneous, intradermal, and intraosseous injections; bladder catheterization in women and men; thoracentesis; pericardiocentesis; insertion of nasogastric tube; dressing and bandaging skills; patient care and others.

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Students can work on action sequences of a given clinical situation in obstetrics and gynecology, pediatrics, intensive care and resuscitation, anesthesiology and more.  Such scenarios can also include incremental developments, for example, when emergency care begins outside or at home, then continues in the ambulance or emergency department, and intensive care unit. Other scenarios can include unpredictable sequence of events.

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Myroslav Kritsak, head of the simulation center, told that it contains 13 simulation rooms, including surgical room; sterilization; emergency care; cardiopulmonary resuscitation; medical procedures; obstetrics; maternity; pediatrics; general care; and virtual simulation training room with computer training programs. Separate debriefing  rooms will be used to discuss mistakes made during work in clinical situation. Student performance in the simulation rooms can be recorded to help analysing their mistakes.

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Head of the Department of Disaster and Military Medicine, Professor Arsen Hudyma noted that work on simulation training center in Ternopil State Medical University started last year as an interdepartmental project. Thus, instructors already have good experience in organizing and conducting simulation training. “This form of teaching is being implemented in our university for quite some time now, in particular within the  Department of Disaster and Military Medicine. Military reserve officers are being trained in at the University’s academic and recreational complex Chervona Kalyna using certain elements of simulation training. Later,  a virtual clinic was created at the School of Nursing. And  finally, in the 2015-2016 academic year center of simulation training was created as a separate unit within the University. It can be used by instructors from all  clinical departments. Our long-term plans are to create a Department of Simulation Training “- said Arsen Hudyma.

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“It is difficult for students to acquire practical skills. Simulation training center enables to perfect skills that are needed when working with a real patient. But there is also another advantage the student can repeat a particular practical technique many times. One can also work on a manipulation which might always possible to encounter in a clinical situation, from various types of injections to opening a patent’s airway, pericardial puncture, and puncture of the chest. Mannequins that display a pathological condition can be examined, and treated. In this case, the role of the instructor is to assess quality of a particular action according to the procedure, and then analyze it.

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As was requested by the University administration, we have covered a wide range of practical skills. There is a surgical room, paramedical room, emergency medical care, intensive care and others. There is also a debriefing room. It is designed to discuss all issues the students have encountered in the course of providing assistance or diagnostics. This room connected to video system, allowing another group of students to observe actions of their colleagues. Using video recording, during debriefing the instructor can analyze mistakes in detail and break down the cases. In fact, the center has all the necessary components needed for simulation training to comply with international educational standards “- said Arsen Hudyma.

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Students who have already worked on perfecting their skills in the simulation center praised its significance and value to academic process. They say it gives them the opportunity to gain practical experience needed to become good doctors.

Earlier this year the university signed an agreement with Polish company Medline Sp. Z.O.O.  to develop a simulation training center. Polish colleagues submitted a project for grant funds to improve the capacity of the center. For its part, the administration of TSMU is ready to allocate additional space for to house new simulation training classes.