SFA opening lifelike nursing building

By Donna McCollum - email

NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) - A mannequin acting like a real hospital patient and treatment rooms which may become the envy of real hospitals can be found in the new Richard and Lucille Dewitt School of Nursing Building.

Stephen F. Austin State University is celebrating its grand opening of its $13 million state of the art facility on Sunday.

The nursing simulation center has the look and feel of a real hospital, right down to the patient.

"He has the capability to actually sweat, to cry, to drool, sneeze. I can catheterize him. He has urine. He can break bones. He can have some bleeding wounds," said Erin Bailey, a clinical instructor at SFA.

Conditions manipulated remotely by instructors in a high-tech control room.

"And can change all the aspects of vital signs, talking, any kind of sounds we want," said lab coordinator Amy Owen.

"He's got bowel sounds, heart sounds, lung sounds. I can change them all," Bailey explains.

This ICU simulation presents nursing students something radically different from previous clinical drills.

"We actually have one down in the pedi/obstetrics area that can actually give birth," said nursing student Sarah Russell.

In a pedi unit, a crying baby turns blue. The nurse is concerned.

"Well, a little panicky because you want to fix it and you've got to find out what's wrong. You've got to do it quickly," said nursing student Carrie Nees.

The simulations are so realistic the board of nursing has deemed the Ed and Gwen Cole Simulation Center the equivalent of in-hospital training.

"We also hope that this facility will be used for other nursing programs when we're not using it. It also allowing other programs in East Texas to have the advantage of the state-of-the-art simulation center and for our area hospitals to use it for training also," said Director Dr. Glenda Walker.

On Sunday at 2 p.m. there will be a grand opening celebration at the Dewitt School of Nursing. Tours will be conducted until 4:30 p.m.. The new building is in the 5700 block of North Street, behind the Kentucky Fried Chicken corporate offices.

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