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PROVO — Doctors and nurses on Tuesday at Utah Valley Regional Medical Center worked on a baby delivery emergency situation. The training exercise simulated a baby being delivered in a car in the hospital's parking lot.
The hospital uses two state-of-the-art robotic mannequins to simulate a wide variety of situations such as a mother in labor, a surgery patient with no pulse, and a cancer patient who is hemorrhaging.
Angie Kahoush, a member of the Utah Valley Regional Medical Center staff, developed the program to prepare staff for multiple emergency situations.
"We rely a lot on what we see, hear, smell and feel and so the more pieces of that that we can add into each scenario, the more realistic we make that for our staff," Kahoush said.
The staff members did several practice runs with the new equipment to get comfortable in an emergency setting. Dr. Marlin Christianson went through the simulation at least four times. He learned that something as simple as communication can greatly impact a real emergency situation.
We rely a lot on what we see, hear, smell and feel and so the more pieces of that that we can add into each scenario, the more realistic we make that for our staff.
–Angie Kahoush, Utah Valley Regional Medical Center
"In [one] scenario, the baby was in significant distress," Christianson said. "There was an umbilical cord that had come out first, and the mother was bleeding very heavily. And for our newborn team to know that was vital. But initially we weren't expressing that. We weren't telling the team."
But, even though the staff is prepared and well equipped, some expecting mothers don't end up making it to the hospital in time. In these situations, doctors say to first call 9-1-1, try to help and calm the mother, and then the babies usually deliver themselves.