Opportunity

Hands-on experience prepares medical and nursing students for a diverse patient-care environment as well as equipping individuals to participate in or lead professional care teams.

The University of Sunderland’s innovative Living Lab addresses the training needs of these aspiring medical practitioners using the most advanced healthcare-industry simulation technology, in interactive spaces and realistic settings.

Students from an array of study disciplines, including Adult Nursing Practice BSc (Hons), Biomedical, Pharmacy and Paramedic Practice, now benefit from ground-breaking new ways of thinking and practising via outstanding teaching and learning in the Living Lab.

Enabling the next generation of highly trained healthcare providers to utilise learning methods powered by digital innovation, not only offers individuals the skills, knowledge and experience to improve the quality and capacity of patient care, but also gives them a competitive advantage as they enter the world of work.

 

Solution

Paramedic students take part in a medical emergency training exercise at Sunderland University Picture: DAVID WOOD

Facilities in the Living Lab provide staff, students and health professionals with the skills to meet the future challenges facing the healthcare sector.

The Living Lab reflects the various settings of care provision typically found in a hospital or healthcare setting. It consists of several specialist laboratories:

  • Mock hospital ward
  • Pharmacy dispensary
  • Dementia friendly patient’s flat
  • Hi-fidelity simulation suite
  • Updated Point of Care Centre

All of these carefully designed mock settings deliver education and training to those involved in patient care using the latest technology to enhance treatment and diagnosis for patients.

The Living Lab is the final element of a £5.5m Sciences Phase II re-development, generously supported by Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) and Garfield Weston Foundation funding and has been developed in collaboration with City Hospitals Sunderland plus other Regional Trust partners alongside Sunderland’s Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG).

The Sciences Complex Phase II has been generously supported by a £2.65m contribution from the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) STEM Teaching Capital Fund. In addition, a £300,000 grant from the Garfield Weston Foundation has been invested in a high-tech simulation suite, the likes of which is not available anywhere else in the region.

Impact

Student paramedic Stephen Roberts using the new CPR training equipment at Shackleton House Picture: DAVID WOOD

The Sciences Complex Phase II has been generously supported by a £2.65m contribution from the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) STEM Teaching Capital Fund. In addition, a £300,000 grant from the Garfield Weston Foundation has been invested in a high-tech simulation suite, the likes of which is not available anywhere else in the region.

A unique, purpose-built environment, the Living Lab boasts a digitally immersive, interactive learning experience. Based entirely on the patient journey, the Living lab uses advanced hi-fidelity simulation equipment to deliver integrated working between university researchers, staff, students and healthcare and life sciences partners.

Apparent in its appearance in the Technological Innovation of the Year shortlist of the Times Higher Awards 2017, the success of the Living Lab is further endorsed by ongoing partnerships with the NHS and HM Forces.

The Living Lab’s success has underpinned further developments at the University, all of which directly benefit individuals across Sunderland by helping us to offer the highest quality, safe clinical care.

Inspired by the Living Lab project’s success is the building of a new Safety and Training Innovation Centre at Vantec HQ in Sunderland. This represents a unique partnership between Vantec and the University of Sunderland, brokered by Sunderland City Council, creating a UK-first ‘Living Warehouse’. The Living Warehouse provides 3D immersive training to take people through all the potential causes and consequences of a single lapse in safety prevention.

Related Successes

Our Partners

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