The Henderson Community College Nursing Program provides simulation manikins for their students to practice their clinical skills on campus. They have a variety of patient simulators ranging from an advanced life support model to a birthing model and an infant model.The nursing department also owns several "VitaSim" simulation models whose vital signs can be programmed by a handheld remote. In addition to using the manikins during skill practice and skill testing, the simulation manikins are utilized at the end of the courses to run simulations in order to “tie it all together” for the students.
Nursing instructor Shelly Chandler explains "During Nursing 220 we cover cardiac, respiratory and musculoskeletal so all of our simulations focus on these health systems. For the most part the students like the manikins. Of course it doesn’t completely take the place of having a real patient to interact with because other than the SimMan, the other manikins do not speak. The students really love Noelle, the birthing mother, and the fact that they can be involved in the labor process."
Additionally, the manikins are also used by the ADN, PN, and EMT programs during the semester for skills training. By using the manikins the students are able to listen to breath sounds, heart sounds, bowel sounds, and blood pressure. The SIM manikin can talk, cough, sound like it is vomiting, and have labored breathing. The baby can coo, cry, and hiccup. HCC Nursing Lab Instructional Specialist Denise Sutton explains "I think at first the students are a little scared or maybe intimidated by the manikins. After they have used them for a while they become more comfortable with them. The simulations become more involved as far as skills and the problems that the patient has as the students advance in the program. The manikins are closer to what it would be like to care for a real patient."