UACCM Expands Nursing Sim Lab with New Medication Dispenser

Instructor Ron Enos types into a computer console adjacent to a medical storage unit
Sim Lab Coordinator Ron Enos states that the dispenser is the same used in hospitals nationwide.
 

The University of Arkansas Community College at Morrilton’s nursing simulation lab has a new piece of equipment common in hospital settings: a Pyxis medication dispenser.

Registered nursing and practical nursing students will have the opportunity to train with this equipment, while expanding the simulation lab’s ability to give students a realistic look inside healthcare facilities. The equipment consists of a large storage unit with two connecting computer consoles. The purpose is to allow a hospital’s nursing staff and the pharmacy to communicate.

Dispensing medication is a delicate process that requires flawless record keeping and coordination. Any errors could result in incorrect dosages to patients. “The Pyxis keeps track of the medication, counts medicine, and will produce the dosage needed for patients,” said Ron Enos, the college’s sim lab coordinator.

The realism of the process goes as far as students being able to access the equipment with provided logins. The equipment can even scan the user’s thumbprint to give access to the medicine in storage.

In a hospital, the pharmacy would have one console with multiple others spread across the facility. At UACCM’s simulation lab, the units are placed together so students can visualize and act out the procedure.

Enos puts a high value on students learning the process with the actual equipment, which he described as “state of the art.” It better prepares them for when they graduate and enter the workforce.

The Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act of 2006 provided funding for the purchase of this equipment.

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