Las Madrinas Simulation Laboratory Research and Education

Research Objectives

  • Improving communication, teamwork and procedures performed during neonatal and pediatric resuscitations
  • Improving the deployment and management of patients on Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation (ECMO)
  • Designing interventions that enhance the communication of vital patient information between pediatric patient providers
  • Delineating best practices for delivering and conveying poor prognoses and various medical outcomes

Our research team at the Las Madrinas Pediatric Simulation Research Laboratory currently consists of six faculty members, three fellows, three residents and two nurses. They enjoy collaboratively working on research objectives with the INSPIRE network (International Network for Simulation-based Pediatric Innovation, Research and Education) and the California Simulation Alliance. Research initiatives include the validity of a lumbar puncture task trainer for LP success; the development, validation, and performance improvement of a double volume exchange transfusion task trainer; patient hand-offs in critical care medicine; compliance with NRP and PALS guidelines in the ED and much more. Last year, the research team had four projects accepted as abstracts, presentations and workshops at three international and national conferences.

Furthermore, our research team is now working in collaboration with patient safety groups at Children's Hospital Los Angeles; we have deemed these our “Sim Squads." There are a number of Sim Squads developing curricula, including PCS, High-Fidelity Mock Codes, ECMO, Resuscitation and Emergency Transport Training.

Simulation Education

The main objective of the Las Madrinas Pediatric Simulation Research Laboratory is to improve safety within patient care. The extensive benefits of simulation practice include problem solving, crisis management, communication, training practitioners, and more.

Simulation is a training and feedback process in which learners practice medical treatment in realistic circumstances using simulation mannequins. Simulators are full-size, anatomically accurate mannequins whose major organ systems have been programmed to react appropriately to a trainee’s interventions. The mannequins can be pre-programmed for standardized training or customized as needed for more individualized training.

The most innovative aspect of using simulation education is that clinical scenarios can be tailored in real time to match the learner’s needs -- a special aspect that few other means of training and/or education can compete with. Here at the Las Madrinas Pediatric Simulation Research Laboratory, both low- and high-fidelity curricula have been devised that focus on the care of the pediatric patient. Third year pediatric residents worked alongside simulation content experts to develop over 90 of these simulation scenarios for acute and non-acute pediatric cases. This curriculum received the Pediatric Innovation Award in 2013 at the International Meeting in Simulation in Healthcare and was featured in a workshop presentation at the Pediatric Academic Society in 2013.

The staff at the Las Madrinas Pediatric Simulation Research Laboratory believe that the video feedback and debriefing processes are key to the learning experience. Integrating video feedback and debriefing in our sessions allow for individual and team feedback which ensures that the health care provider gets the most out of their educational session. Thus, we plan to implement and incorporate audio and visual recording software into our training sessions. This software has capabilities that include live streaming, synchronizing with mannequin data, and securely storing each class, which enhances integration and scenario review.

We are dedicated to meeting the educational and simulation training needs of all internal physicians and staff, as well as external healthcare professionals. This is a very exciting time for our laboratory, as we will be undergoing great transformation in the coming months by building upon our solid education foundation with the latest technologies and space renovations.

For more information regarding simulation education and training, please contact us.

Educational Resources

Lab Team

  • Alyssa Rake, MD, FAAP
    Medical Director
  • Suzanne Taylor, RN-BC, MSN, EMT
    Administrative Director
  • Chynna Ungson, BS
    Project Leader
  • Amy Conlan, RN
    Project Coordinator
  • L. Caulette Young, BSN, RN, CCRN
    Simulation Specialist Educator