What’s even better than the real thing?
When it comes to health professionals’ high-stakes decisions, simulations indeed deserve their prime place in TMU’s educational landscape.
Do you want a first-time pilot, or one who has managed crises in a flight simulator until their responses are correct and immediate?
Similarly, even the most promising surgical procedures involve a learning curve, with one TMU back surgeon estimating that it takes more than 20 operations to gain reliable skill using new techniques in minimally invasive surgery. Do you want to be one of those 20 patients?
The Center for Education in Medical Simulation is growing to meet these needs at TMU. This center has grown from its CEO’s observations that a lot of training mannequins went unused and that nurses shunned emergency room jobs. Now CEMS has extended its technological and institutional reach even beyond our university — to help the city plan disaster response strategies for the recent Taipei Universiade, and to help learners worldwide with online courses.
Center CEO and Thomas Che-Wei Lin, a physician by training, said TMU’s simulation center is the first Asian center to qualify in two certification categories of the Society for Simulation in Healthcare.
The center applies virtual technology to learning situations using high-end equipment. These technologies include a XVR (eXtreme Virtual Reality) 3D simulation system, the CEMS operating room’s virtual surgical system developed in cooperation with mobile phone maker HTC, a six-dimensional virtual reality imaging system and virtual patients.
TMU clinical education faculty can enhance their instruction by moving from physical models to virtual reality, allowing students to learn how to operate even the most advanced medical technologies well before they progress to patient care. The 727-sq. meter center also has a simulated intensive care unit that opens a new era of virtual-reality teaching.
An opening ceremony took place in May at the CEMS offices in TMU’s Daan campus. Taipei Mayor Wen-Je Ko attended and was briefed on a disaster response system. The mayor, a physician by training, also witnessed simulation training for extracorporeal membrane oxygenation and viewed other medical simulation equipment.
In August, TMU hosted an annual Asian conference on simulation education featuring several US experts. It was organized by CEMS senior advisor Dr. Paul Phrampus, also director of the Peter M. Winter Institute for Simulation, Education and Research (WISER) at the University of Pittsburgh. Dr. Phrampus’s advice has been central to the TMU center’s development since Dr. Lin attended such an event in Hong Kong years ago.
As the conferees gathered nearby in the new Daan Campus’s meeting hall, Dr. Phrampus and Dr. Lin spoke about CEMS’ development and future milestones.