The future of surgery training: Residents learn thoracic surgery with simulators

About 40 first-year thoracic surgery resident physicians from around the United States learned heart and lung surgery skills at a "boot camp" last week at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Much of the training was on simulators, which use pig hearts and lungs with mechanical circulation and ventilation. The simulators provide a lifelike setting for the residents to practice skills before they go to the operating rooms at their hospitals. Residents learn routine thoracic surgery techniques and how to deal with emergencies during surgery.

The boot camp, held July 27-29 at UNC's Friday Center, is sponsored by the Thoracic Surgery Directors Association (TSDA). The camp teaches basic skills to residents who are beginning their thoracic surgery training, said Richard Feins, M.D., of the UNC Division of Cardiothoracic Surgery, a director of the camp. About 30 surgeons from other universities came to UNC to assist with the training.

Reporter Cliff Bellamy of The Herald-Sun wrote about the training in an article published Sunday, July 29, 2012. Read the Herald-Sun story here.

Dr. Feins is principal investigator of an eight-institution study of simulator training for resident physicians as a way to improve patient safety. The study is funded by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.

Read more about the surgery simulation training at UNC  here, in an article published in UNC's research magazine, Endeavors.

 

The original article can be found at the UNC Department of Surgery's website here.

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