Patient Simulator 'Harvey' to Train Students at UC Academic Health Center
A desire to strengthen nurse-physician relationships when
treating patients has resulted in the addition of Harvey, a
cardiopulmonary patient simulator, to the University of Cincinnati
(UC) Academic Health Center. Harvey is housed in the Simulation
Center at the UC College of Medicine and is being used by both
College of Nursing and College of Medicine students.
Harvey provides a platform for developing cardiac physical
exam skills among students, residents and faculty. Developed at the
University of Miami Medical Center, it is one of the best known and
most widely used medical simulators in the world, according to
Michael Sostok, MD, assistant dean for medical education, medical
director of the Simulation Center, and professor of medicine in the
Department of Internal Medicine.
"It’s great because one of the big areas that students
struggle with is recognizing abnormal cardiac sounds, abnormal lung
sounds, and even if they recognize them, correlating them with what
the actual disease process is in a patient,” says Sostok.
"Length of stay in hospitals is measured now in hours instead of
days, which makes it even more difficult for health profession
trainees to work with patients in a clinical setting because the
patients don’t lay in their bed for very long.”
The high-tech tool arrived at UC thanks to a donation from
Harry Fry, MD, a retired cardiologist in Cincinnati. Fry says that
over the course of his career, often the working environment
between nurses and physicians was not good. After retiring, he
began working with Sally Dunn, an associate librarian emerita at
the UC College of Nursing, on creating a nurse/physician
collaborative. When Fry learned of Harvey from a friend on
cardiology faculty at Duke University who helped developed the
simulator, he thought the device would be an ideal fit for this
"This will be a continuation of the concept that Sally and I
were working on which was to bring nursing and medical students
together in the classroom during their formative years and Harvey
is perfect for that,” he says. "Nurses can learn from Harvey,
physicians can learn from Harvey and they can learn together from
Harvey, so it can bring them together.”
Harvey is designed to train students by recreating 30
different pathological problems that they can learn to recognize
and become familiar with how those conditions change, and learn
basic management of those conditions, according to Sostok.
"Harvey brings another tool of sophistication, of being able
to hone in on the assessment skills we’re teaching and
‘his’ area of great usage is in cardiac care,”
says Debi Sampsel, chief officer of innovation and entrepreneurship
in the College of Nursing.
Sostok says this version of Harvey is scalable and software
can be updated if necessary, based on particular training needs
discovered during simulation sessions with students.
"Harvey provides another opportunity to strengthen
interprofessional collaboration between our Academic Health Center
colleges to affect better training and ultimately better, safer
health care for our patients,” says Sostok.
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