Courtesy: Howard University News Room

Howard University has opened a new $5 million virtual medical training facility that has the capacity for improvised technology, computer-based simulation, task training simulation, virtual reality simulation and manikin-based simulation.

The 6,000-square-foot facility is a simulated hospital environment designed to help improve communication skills between healthcare workers and their patients. It will serve as an integral part of training for more than 800 health science students at the university that has more than 20 academic programs, including medicine, nursing, dentistry, pharmacy, physical therapy and occupational therapy.

The Health Sciences Simulation Center houses five high-tech human patient simulators, an operating room, an intensive care/emergency room and a task training/surgical skills suite. Students will be able to practice medical procedures and experience the type of real-world decision-making challenges generally reserved for interns, residents and fully trained health professionals.

The Simulation Center will complement the Clinical Skills Center, which provides an opportunity for medical, nursing, pharmacy and allied health students, residents training at Howard University Hospital and medical fellows to practice treating patients in a controlled environment. The 5,000-square-foot Clinical Skills center has 10 patient examination rooms, an observation room, a master control room, a conference room and a break area. The examination rooms are fully equipped to simulate a doctor’s office. They also have cameras and a microphone to record interactions for later review by students and professors. The observation room allows faculty to watch students and provide immediate feedback.