Health Care Education Incorporates Cutting-Edge Technology and Real World Experience

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Article by: Joe Clark, clarkjx@pgcc.edu

LARGO, Md. —The Center for Health Studies at Prince George's Community College, which opened at the beginning of the fall semester, features cutting-edge technology and the latest interactive educational tools including digital monitoring, high fidelity simulation manikins, electronic medical records software and  digital x-ray units. Students also learn skills in real-world simulation laboratories. The Center for Health Studies also is the new home to a consolidated computer operations nerve center.  

“It was essential to incorporate instructional technology in the simulation laboratories,” said Angela Anderson, dean of health sciences. “The ultimate goal was to integrate as much high fidelity simulation as possible to provide students with the ability to demonstrate competency in the classroom before working with actual patients,” she added.  

Digital recording capability is available in all simulation laboratories to assess student performance. Simulation scenarios can be recorded using input from high fidelity manikins and other medical equipment including ventilators and life function monitors. Filming students with multiple cameras allows faculty to observe the overall scenario and evaluate specific skills. Students are able to review their performances at the same time instructors provide assessments.  

High fidelity simulation manikins used in the labs are realistic, full-body simulators with complete airway breathing, cardiac and circulation functionality. Programmed with detailed medical scenarios by faculty, manikins can demonstrate coughing, wheezing, bleeding from multiple sites, secretions, eye movement, seizures and convulsions. Students follow the simulated patients through a variety of settings including pre-hospital care, emergency department and intensive care units.  

Working with web-based software, a virtual laboratory allows students to practice using electronic medical records systems, and transcription and speech recognition programs much-like those used in real-world medical settings. Students use web-based software that matches interactive databases with real clinical cases developed from medical records of consenting patients.  

In a laboratory setting which features two state-of-the- art x-ray units, students practice performing radiologic examinations using two full-body human replicas with multiple fractures and disease processes to examine and process actual digital radiographs. The equipment is comparable to machines they will encounter in a hospital setting. Both rooms are digital and permit interface with a picture archiving communication system (PACS). 

Technology staff monitors and manages technology operations more efficiently from the new central location. Computer operations include the Data Center, Network Operations Center, Programming Services, Telecommunications Center, Technology Services Help Desk and Audio Video Technology Services that provide support and back-up communications systems for the entire college.  

For more information on health sciences programs at Prince George's Community College, call 301-336-6000 or to arrange a media tour, contact the Marketing and Creative Services Department at 301-322-0916. 

Prince George’s Community College is a National Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Two-year Education designated by the National Security Agency and the Department of Homeland Security (2010-2015). Established in 1958, Prince George’s Community College provides transfer and career programs that help students transfer to four-year colleges and universities and prepare them for the workforce. Each year, 40,000 students take part in more than 200 academic programs and workforce development and continuing education courses. Located in Largo, Maryland, Prince George’s Community College has additional sites at Joint Base Andrews, University Town Center in Hyattsville, Laurel College Center, Skilled Trades Center in Camp Springs, and Westphalia Training Center in Upper Marlboro. For more information, visit the college website at www.pgcc.edu, follow on Twitter,  Facebook, Foursquare, LinkedIn and tune-in to Transforming Lives at Prince George’s Community College, Mondays at 11 a.m.  

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