United States Department of Veterans Affairs

VA NY Harbor Healthcare System

VA to Open New Simulation Lab at Brooklyn, Manhattan Campuses
April 1, 2011

Brooklyn, NY – A new Simulation Learning Center will open at New York Harbor Healthcare System next month. A ribbon cutting has been scheduled for the Brooklyn SimLearn Center on April 4 at 10:30 a.m. A new Simulation center is also opening at the Manhattan Campus on April 12 at 12:30 p.m. The simulation centers, both grant funded, mimic emergency situations for the purpose of multi-disciplinary training. Traditionally, medical education has relied on training with real patients in actual clinical settings. While hands-on experiential learning is indispensable, VA is concerned with and dedicated to patient safety as well as state of the art learning. The simulation centers are one example of this commitment. “A situation where a real patient is in cardiac distress is very challenging to every member of the clinical team that gathers to treat serious and life-threatening emergencies," said Steven Sedlis, M.D., Chief of Cardiology at the Manhattan Campus. He explained that simulation with a life-like, high-tech manikin who breathes and talks is a very effective training tool for relatively inexperienced physicians and medical students to play-out the options they must consider and actions they must take in a true-life emergency. The information about heart rate, temperature and other vital signs is provided by a facilitator who manipulates computer readings to simulate readings appropriate to a particular medical condition. “The center offers state-of-the-art video capability, ultrasound for the placement of central lines and other technology, enabling us to teach the latest techniques as they become available,” said Dr. Annemarie Leyden, Chief, Learning Resources, VA New York Harbor, who coordinates the lab’s activities at the Brooklyn Campus with Dr. Barry Goozner, Co-Chief of General Internal Medicine, Brooklyn Campus, and Associate Program Director For Medicine Program, SUNY Downstate. “There are so many possibilities.” “Simulation is a wonderful resource that is being increasingly used for training both VA physicians, nurses and medical students from the VA affiliated New York University School of Medicine,” said Brian S. Kaufman, M.D., who oversees the Manhattan center with Kevin J. Felner, M.D. and their colleagues from the Division of Critical Care. “The Lab’s videotaping capability allows us to review and critique the techniques once the training is complete,” said Dr. Goozner, adding that simulation training began about seven years ago at VA’s Brooklyn campus, and the new high-tech lab is one of very few in the New York City region using simulation labs. ###