Acute care nurse practitioner education: enhancing performance through the use of clinical simulation
Full-body patient simulators have been used for a number of years to educate nurse anesthetists and anesthesiologists. These lifelike mannequins operate from a sophisticated computerized system with the ability to generate multiple physiologic events and respond to numerous pharmacologic stimuli. The authors recently integrated the use of the patient simulator into the curriculum to educate their acute care nurse practitioner students. The learning process was divided into three steps: the presimulation experience, the simulation experience, and the postsimulation experience. These steps are described as well as important principles that need to be integrated into each phase of the process. A case scenario on respiratory failure provides an example of the simulation experience. In addition, the advantages and disadvantages of this teaching method, as identified by faculty and students, are discussed.
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