This archived news story is available only for your personal, non-commercial use. Information in the story may be outdated or superseded by additional information. Reading or replaying the story in its archived form does not constitute a republication of the story.
Nadine Wimmer ReportingIn tonight's episode of E.R. you just saw the doctors training on some pretty impressive technology. I found that same technology actually trains Utah medical teams.
The opening scene of E.R. showed docs frantically working to save a patient. High blood pressure, failing pulse, he dies, but at the last minute the audience learns he's not a real patient.
ER: "Congratulations Abbey, you managed to kill the practice man."
Students at Brigham Young University's Nursing Learning Center train the same way. He’s called Mr. Smallwood and is actually a super automated man, or SAM. He's very life-like, has a pulse, even pupils that dilate. And on this occasion he's programmed with the same problem as E.R.'s patient.
The same flurry of activity, but here at BYU students recognize the signs of a drug overdose. Unlike on the show, the patient survives.
Patricia Ravert, BYU Nursing Learning Center: “They did the things they needed to and the patient responded and was stabilized."
This technology is rare but very valuable, giving students a chance real-life practice before real lives are at stake.
Natalie West, Student: “The beeps and the patient breathing, you feel the stress of the moment more than you ever could with paper and a normal mannequin."
Students say it also helps their bedside manner, since SAM can talk back to them.