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Nursing students at the Hibbing Community College (HCC) are stepping out of the classroom, into a realistic hospital room setting and learning how to treat patients in life and death situations. The newly remodeled HCC Healthcare Simulation Center opened this semester and is transforming the way students train. The state-of-the art simulation allows the students to go beyond the book and gain real-life experience that comes without the risk of working on real people.
“Students can come in and practice clinical with patients from birth all the way up to death, and they can do it in a safe environment,” explained Sandy Gustafson, nursing program director at HCC. “They can actually do the hands-on care in critical or unusual situations that they wouldn’t get in a facility that’s in a rural area.” The mannequins talk, breath, blink, cough, puke and bleed like a real human would. One of the female robots even gives birth.
“We can assess them in a way that’s different than just learning from a book because we’re just pretending there,” said Brandy Mass, a first-year nursing student. “If you don’t have that experience behind you with the simulation, then you risk the chance of freezing or not knowing what to do or drawing a blank,” said Ashton Martin, a first-year nursing student. “This prevents us from feeling that nervousness.”