Jeff Warr Photo/SJHS

Horizon Health Skills Lab for Co-op students

by Mr. Warr - Tuesday, January 30, 2018

To wrap up an exciting semester at Horizon Health, high school co-op students got to participate in skills lab exercises at the Saint John Regional Hospital during their last day. Jean Dean, a nurse manager at Ridgewood Veterans Wing and Saint John High School alumni (class of 1974), takes responsibility for coordinating the Horizon Health Nursing rotation available to high school co-op students interested in health sciences.

This wonderful program allows participating students to visit several units/departments and clinics, at St. Joseph's and the Regional Hospital, and learn from various health care professionals over the course of 14 weeks.

The Skills day Lab was a hit amongst the eleven students from our four local high schools that interviewed successfully to participate in the program 1st semester. Six students were from SJHS. Ms. Dean led students through a few interesting hands on learning exercises:

• Use of a handwashing station, called the "glitter bug glow germ", in which students could see the areas missed when handwashing. It was a real eye opener.

• Taking a person's blood pressure the old fashioned way. • How to start an intravenous on a device simulating a human arm.

• Giving intramuscular injection using oranges.

Anna Szweda, a RN at Ridgewood Veterans Wing and also SJHS alumni (1987), coordinated a "Dementia Tour" at the Skills Lab. This exercise enabled students to walk, for a time, in an afflicted person's shoes. The tour employed four components to alter the students' senses and perception and simulate the day-to-day experiences of people with dementia and Alzheimer's. This tour provided a deeper understanding of the disease and reinforced the importance of patience and empathy in the health care profession, and for those with family members affected. Olive Steeves-Babineau brought a vein finder, a Doppler and a bladder scanner to explain, demonstrate and involve students while doing so. Sue Benjamin and Leisa Ouelette, from the trauma program, demonstrated and allowed students to practice, how to intubate an adult and baby. As well, the process of protecting someone's spine when injured. A huge thank you to Jean Dean and Horizon Health for providing students with another amazing learning opportunity!

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