A Lyon County Riverboat Foundation mini-grant has put the finishing touch on Northwest Iowa Community College’s Mobile Simulation Ambulance.
The $2,000 grant has paid for the vinyl wrap branding the ambulance which is a tool NCC uses to help train students in saving lives. The idea for the mobile simulation ambulance was the brain child of Emergency Services Education Coordinator, Kevin Miller. During EMS classes, instructors like to have an ambulance on site for students to practice in, but with increasing call volumes in area ambulance services, this is no longer an option.
The simulation ambulance will be used in EMS classes to provide realistic simulation of treating a patient on scene, loading them into the ambulance and delivering them to the hospital. Ultimately, the ambulance will be used with classes held on campus and taken out into the community to provide simulation experience for area EMS services and rural hospitals at a low, accessible cost, Miller said.
Simulation is a standard in health care education because it is a controlled situation with designated outcomes. The ambulance will service as a tool to help emergency medical service instructors and students practice and prepare for different situations.
“Simulation helps us develop critical thinking skills so when the person is in the situation, they can make decisions based on simulation experiences,” Miller said. “EMT classes are notorious for saying ‘end scene’ at the end of a simulation, without the actual transport and delivery to the hospital and now with the Mobile Simulation Ambulance we can simulate hospital delivery – especially with the new health care building. Patient care doesn’t end until you hand them off to the nurses in the hospital.”
The unit was assembled and wired as a full-service ambulance through the donation of the ambulance box from the Little Rock Ambulance team, a chassis purchased from Arrow Ambulance of Rock Rapids. The students in the Diesel Technology and Welding programs on campus completed the work.
The mobile simulation ambulance was debuted at the Scrubs Camp in late June where 65 students in grades 7-12 learned about health care career opportunities where students participated in an escape room in the back of an ambulance.
For more information about educational opportunities at NCC, either on campus or online, call 712-324-5061, 800-352-4907, or visit nwicc.edu.
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Photo: L-R: Shawn Dreesen, Lyon County Riverboat Foundation Board Member, Heidi Borer, Little Rock EMS Director, Kevin Miller, NCC Coordinator-Emergency Services