Patient simulators have been a growing trend to teach vital skills from interviewing patients to get a thorough medical history and to identify and improve upon weaknesses before medical students get anywhere patients. A health It company has developed an interactive simulator for medical school students and has raised $2 million as it prepares to roll the program out.
The Mammoth Lakes, California based i-Human Patients designed and developed the i-Human Patient Simulator. The fresh capital comes as the company shifts from the development stage to hosting and supporting the program.
In a demo of the program on its website, the interactive program allows users to click on patient questions and ask further questions based on responses. Users can also get a deeper evaluation of certain topics. Performance is evaluated in each step. Students can give patients a series of tests from blood pressure and pulse to listening to chest sounds and choose from multiple characteristics to describe what they hear, entering the information in an electronic medical record to get familiar with the process. X-rays of patients can also be read by zooming in and out of them. the program also contains three dimensional simulators for the cardiovascular system and anatomy.
Medical schools are getting increasingly interactive in their teaching styles. With the shift to more digital learning, such as the adoption of iPads as instructional tools, medical schools see simulators as effective ways for medical students to not only practice basics such as listening to chest sounds and improving the way they gather information. It also helps address the shortage of physicians. They also are using these tools to get the most accurate assessment of a student’s abilities to effectively interview patients that can be refined.
Although some medical institutions are developing software programs in house for most the cost is too prohibitive. Offering this program through cloud-based platforms on a subscription basis will make it more accessible to medical schools and healthcare facilities globally.