Dart Foundation representatives visit Mercy

Mercy Hospital Ada registered nurses Amber Dawson, Troy Fuller and Diana Elmore work on emergency procedures using a Laerdal SimMan (Adult) 3G Platinum Manikin Tuesday at the hospital. The device, purchased as part of a $50,000 donation from the DART Foundation, is able to accurately simulate a large number of human conditions and illnesses for training purposes.

Four months after awarding a grant to Mercy Hospital Ada for training mannequins, local representatives of the Dart Foundation visited the hospital Tuesday to see staffers use the equipment to hone their skills.

Representatives from the foundation’s headquarters in Mason, Michigan, were planning to make the trip to Ada, but their flight was canceled. A committee of local representatives, which was planning to participate in the visit anyway, stood in for the group from Michigan.

Dart Foundation representative Joenita Lehman, who serves as the human resources manager for Dart Corp. in Ada, was part of Tuesday’s visit. She said the committee appreciated the opportunity to see hospital staffers practice their skills on the mannequins.

“They told us quite a bit about it and all the capabilities of the mannequin and how the process worked,” she said Friday. “We did get to see them kind of work through a situation, and then they had some other mannequins that helped with administering CPR and making sure that the staff members were correctly performing CPR. And we actually got to do some compressions on the mannequins.”

Training mannequins

In April, the foundation awarded Mercy Hospital Ada a $50,000 grant to lease an adult Laerdal SimMan 3G Platinum Manikin and purchase other equipment for teaching classes with the American Heart Association.

The hospital used the funds to buy five adult training mannequins and supporting equipment, plus an iPad so medical staffers can get real-time feedback about the quality of compressions during training.

The term “compressions” refers to the up-and-down movement of a patient’s chest to support circulation during a cardiac event

The equipment will be used to train newly hired nurses and other clinical professionals, said Troy Fuller, Mercy’s manager of clinical education for southern Oklahoma. The hospital will also use the new equipment to conduct ongoing competency training.

“It gives people a safe practice environment to enhance their skills and improve their skills without the risks associated with performing those techniques on a live patient,” Fuller said.

He said rural hospitals don’t see many patients with certain kinds of trauma, so the mannequins will allow Mercy’s nurses and other clinical professionals to improve their skills in some areas of emergency care.

Fuller said the rest of the new equipment will go to the local American Heart Association training center, which supports the hospital.

Mercy’s care transition manager, Diana Elmore, said the new equipment will be useful for training staffers in advanced cardiac life support and other trauma nursing skills.

“It’s going to be amazing,” she said. “We have needed new mannequins for teaching for quite some time, so this is just perfect for us.”

Eric Swanson is the City Hall and general assignment reporter for The Ada News. He spent 15 years working at the Dodge City Daily Globe in Dodge City, Kansas, before joining The Ada News’ staff in 2012.