Saturday, December 10, 2022

Northwest EMT Program Implements New Simulation Testing

Dr. Stanley Thompson medical director for Paramedic Programs in northwest Mississippi assesses a Northwest Mississippi Community College EMT student in the program’s new high definition simulation lab. The lab prepares students for real life scenarios they might encounter as emergency first responders in the field in a safe, controlled environment. (Photo by LaJuan Tallo)
Dr. Stanley Thompson medical director for Paramedic Programs in northwest Mississippi assesses a Northwest Mississippi Community College EMT student in the program’s new high definition simulation lab. The lab prepares students for real life scenarios they might encounter as emergency first responders in the field in a safe, controlled environment. (Photo by LaJuan Tallo)

The Emergency Medical Technology program at Northwest Mississippi Community College recently implemented a new testing and training component into their program that will help their students better prepare for their challenging careers.

The program now has a high definition simulation lab where students are placed into “real-life” scenarios that they might encounter in the field. According to David Kuchta, coordinator of the paramedic program, Northwest is trying to expose students to various field situations, but in a controlled and safe environment.

“The beauty of this type of testing is that anything goes. We deal with the unknown in our careers every day. There are some constants, but anytime you deal with people in emergency situations, you never know what you will experience. We are putting students into situations like they would come across in the field,” Kuchta said.

The students are placed in a room that is furnished to look like the average home they may have to go into, and there are distractions, such as family members (portrayed by other students) or noises, and students are assessed on their ability to maintain focus and calm in the medical situation they are given. The proctor for the test is in another room watching by multiple cameras and communicating by microphone or by radio.

Kuchta said that the simulation testing is given to sophomores who are ready to graduate, and that it is one of the terminal competencies that they need to complete the program.

Last week, Dr. Stanley Thompson, medical director for Paramedic Programs in northwest Mississippi, assessed sophomores using the new simulation lab. “This adds a whole new level to testing. The fact that we have scenarios set up with manikins just like real life that these students will see when they get out of school, adds more comfort and gets them in the thought process of dealing with chaos. We can throw a lot of distractions in there and still have them totally focused on what is going on at the scene with a patient,“ Thompson said.

Kuchta said that plans are in place to add two ambulances that have recently been donated to the program into their simulation laboratory testing. “We are looking forward to being able to expand this type of testing for our students,” Kuchta said.

For more information on the Northwest EMT program, visit the college’s website at www.northwestms.edu or contact Kuchta at 662-562-3986 or email dkuchta@northwestms.edu.

84,459FansLike
20,500FollowersFollow
14,100FollowersFollow