Robots used to train doctors

Robots used to train doctors
(Source: CBS News)
(Source: CBS News)

(KFVS) - You've always heard that practice makes perfect, but in the medical world, you don't always get a second chance to save a life.

That's why Johns Hopkins Medicine in Baltimore is using life-like robots to simulate emergencies.

Medical professionals are getting real-world experience in a simulated setting.

The manikins at the Simulation Center have a monitor that can display EKG, pulse oximeter, blood pressure, arterial waveforms, pulmonary artery waveforms, anesthetic gases, etc.

"The manikins can actually breathe and they can actually blink their eyes, they can speak," said Dr. Elizabeth Hunt, the Director of the Johns Hopkins Medicine Simulation Center. "We can change their heart rate, we can change their blood pressure, their breathing rate."

Courses at the Sim Center include difficult airway management, what to do if a patient codes, and OB/NICU team training.

The director said exercises like these are vital to the training process.

"The level of realism enables us to look at teamwork, look at communication factors, and engages the learner much more than when it was a static white room," said Dr. Hunt.

One doctor who is taking a course at the Sim Center said she appreciates that mistakes are encouraged in hands-on moments.

"It's absolutely made me a better physician when I go out and treat my real patients," said Dr. Amy Manzo, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine.

Dr. Manzo spent time at the center caring for a four day old with a heart problem in the Pediatric ICU.

"You know, if you make a mistake you know you're not actually going to hurt them. And you can take the lessons you learn here in the simulation center and apply them to your real patients," said Dr. Manzo.

A spokesperson for Johns Hopkins said more than 150-thousand hours of training take place every year at the Simulation Center.

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