An upgrade in delivery

Not many mothers have given birth 21 times in four months. However, Lucina, BYU College of Nursing’s newest birthing manikin has been laboring since she arrived. From the sound of her voice to the touch of her skin, Lucina delivers the most life-like delivery experience for the College of Nursing students.

The manikin is one of the latest, high-fidelity birth simulation models from CAE Fidelis and will greatly elevate the caliber of education and hands-on practice for students now and in the future of the program.

With 10 pre-configured birthing scenarios, Lucina can give birth in multiple birthing positions, has two abdomens (one for use without a baby), realistic breathing with two separate heart beats—one for her and the baby, as well as flexible limbs and joints.

“I’m really excited about Lucina,” says Laura Thorpe a registered nurse and college lab instructor. “She is more high-tech and much more true-to-life. Her legs are more realistic; they bend at the knees, and they can fit in the stirrups of the bed—even the feel of her skin is more real.”

All fourth-semester nursing students enroll in a simulation lab to practice caring for women and experience child labor and delivery.  Students experience three types of simulations including childbirth, post-partum hemorrhage and pregnancy-induced hypertension and seizures. IMG_4629

Shelly Reed, associate teaching professor along with other nursing professors, are expanding Lucina’s use in the nursing curriculum. Beginning next fall, the college will have a simulation lab at a set time for students to practice with the manikin. The goal is to help students understand their role of being a nurse during a delivery, learn how to care for a post-partum hemorrhage, the leading cause of death worldwide to childbearing women, and care for pregnancy-induced hypertension, the second leading cause of death in childbearing women.

“[The lab] allows them to take the active role of the nurse,” says Reed. “They get the full experience like in a hospital. It helps reinforce what they are learning in class.”

The old manikin, Noelle, had many problems as she didn’t always work. There was trouble placing her legs to the side in the stirrups of the bed, and she couldn’t hemorrhage. The nurses would have to simulate post delivery bleeding by wearing special scrubs with a blood reservoir placed inside to get the bleeding right.

“With Noelle, there were a lot of little problems,” says Thorpe. “Sometimes she worked great and on some occasions, she didn’t.”

Stacie Hunsaker, assistant teaching professor who oversees the labs and lab instructors, shared how much more she was able to experience with Lucina being in the college.

“I have been a nurse for 27 years, but have never worked on a labor and delivery unit,” Hunsaker says. “Until Lucina came, I have never had the opportunity to check for cervical dilation in the progression of labor. I’m excited about [Lucina] and the more in-depth training our students will receive.”

By Brooke Tait—BYU College of Nursing public relations assistant

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