A group of students undertaking their certificate in Allied Health got some valuable hands-on experience on Tuesday when they participated in aspects of the Nursing, Midwifery and Paramedicine courses offered at La Trobe University, Bendigo.
While information giving and gathering was an important part of the day, including how these courses are structured and delivered, much of the time was spent with manikins set up so students could perform a variety of clinical practices the various roles were likely to demand.
Activities included CPR on manikins, checking vital signs, listening to bowel and respiratory sounds, providing oxygen to a newborn baby displaying signs of cyanosis, and aspirating stomach contents through a naso-gastric tube. Students came away inspired by their experiences and excited that the course was offered locally.
For those interested in studying Paramedicine, the day was a valuable opportunity to work with Ray Gleeson (MICA Paramedic, Lecturer and Course Coordinator at La Trobe) and his second and third year Paramedicine students, who ran through a number of skills and simulations.
Students were given the opportunity to practice Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR), intubation, prefilling syringes in preparation for an IV flush and using bagged oxygen masks, and airways. Students also participated in a simulation of a cardiac arrest where state of the art mannequins were programmed to mimic the appropriate symptoms. They worked with Ray and the student Paramedics to regain vital signs and move the patient onto a spinal board for transfer to an ambulance.
Students found the fast pace exciting and were exposed to the importance of the critical thinking skills that are required to work as a Paramedic–an inspirational experience for those considering a career in the industry.