TYLER, Texas — A college’s new ambulance simulator is giving EMS students an opportunity to train in real-life scenarios.
Tyler Junior College’s EMS students now have the opportunity to replicate calls with the simulator that lets them train for any type of situation.
“It replicates what kind of environment they’ll be working in, from the emergency situation to even how the equipment and supplies in the ambulance are set up,” TJC EMS professions department chair and professor Rory Prue said. “We can simulate any type of ambulance call as well as teach them how to work as a team with a limited number of players in a very limited amount of space.”
Prue added that since one side of the simulator is open, students can observe what is going on throughout the exercises.
He added that the students start out with basic lessons such as how to lift and carry a stretcher.
“We begin moving and lifting as early as Day 2 of the program,” Prue said. “It’s important to learn how to move the patient safely in and out of the ambulance, and how to do it so that you don’t injure your back or yourself in the process.”
After the basics, the emergency scenarios are introduced.
“When a call comes, EMTs and paramedics must be ready for any situation,” Prue said. “In the training, we’ll go from minor events all the way up to what we would call a ‘mega-code situation,’ meaning the patient is in critical condition and they are working all types of treatment on the patient in the back of the ambulance.”
Instructors simulate the correct response time to the hospital based on the type of simulated situation that they are learning.
“From there, it’s just a matter of whatever the instructor is giving them and telling them, so they realize how much time they have to work with,” Prue said. “It’s the next step between the classroom and being out in the field. The students really like it.”