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Interdisciplinary Simulation Event Adds OT to the Mix

Students from physical, occupational, and respiratory therapy learned the importance of collaboration in the intensive care setting through simulated learning opportunities at the Shelden Clinical Simulation Center in the School of Medicine. This is the first year that OT students have been included in the simulation. Prior to working with a standardized patient in the simulation lab, students met for an ice-breaker and learned more about respective roles on the healthcare team.
Though these different disciplines work with their patients separately most of the time, more collaboration is needed with complex medical patients – especially those who are on a ventilator and cannot speak or easily be understood. Therefore, this interdisciplinary experience is valuable for these students and provides real-life scenarios that they might experience in their careers as PTs, RTs, and OTs. 
Although students found the possibility of working with a patient in the intensive care unit to be intimidating, they also learned that good communication can help everyone feel more confident.