The STIL has been a busy place since it began operating in April. Not only is it training medical students, residents, practicing physicians and other staff from Northwestern and its affiliates, it has opened its doors to outside groups, ranging from middle school kids, to professionals attending local medical conferences, to CIOs from companies around the Chicagoland area. In addition, the center gave a tour to medical school alumni during Alumni Weekend in early April, hosted health care journalists from across the country in late April, and had a visit from a local politician in July. All of these gatherings are focused on educating people about the benefits of simulation and, in some cases, showing scenarios and cutting-edge equipment in action.
In addition to regular simulation training where learners practice hands-on clinical care, the Simulation center provides its expertise by assisting Northwestern Memorial Hospital with new nursing orientation. And with the opening of an expanded emergency room at NMH, STIL center staff helped to examine workflow and the use of added equipment in the new space to find where issues might arise before they began admitting real patients.
For professionals outside of Northwestern, the STIL Center has opened its doors to organizations such as the Society for Airway Management and the American College of Chest Physicians so they can offer a variety of continuing education opportunities to their members.
As an American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology simulation training site, Northwestern offers a program that focuses on the high-tech skills required during obstetrical emergencies. This training will be available for community physicians as well. “We’ll also be starting an office-based emergencies class for physicians that will cover the first five minutes of care that can be provided before paramedics arrive,” says John Vozenilek, director of the STIL Center.