Researchers: George Pantalos, Audrey Riggs, and Justin Heidel
We are developing a physical simulator mannequin of an infant—the KardioKid—focusing on cardiovascular function to train critical care pediatric hospital staff. The simulator creates real pulsating “blood” flow and can create normal and heart failure conditions. To make conditions as lifelike as possible, the simulator can be hooked up to the same pressure and ECG sensors that are used on real patients so that the patient condition can be displayed on a patient monitor. Using the same technique, supplies, and equipment used at the hospital to create a lifelike setting, it is possible to put the simulator on cardiopulmonary support or ventricular assist support to maximize the fidelity of the simulation and training experience for hospital staff. The development version of this mock circulation has been used at University of Louisville affiliate Norton Children’s Hospital, and this unit has been demonstrated at three national conferences and a couple of children’s hospitals in the U.S. A functioning KardioKid simulator is demonstrated at the display.