Simulation Lab

A critical aspect of medical training is learning to transfer knowledge into lifesaving action during crisis.  Our Kenya Registered Nurse Anesthesia students are supervised as they learn to perform intubations and administer medicines to the nearly 10,000 surgery patients that come to Kijabe each year.  But to learn emergency care techniques, additional help is needed.

A grant called ImPACT Africa (Improving Perioperative & Anesthesia Care and Training in Africa) through GE Foundation and Vanderbilt University provides interactive simulation mannequins that allow students to practice emergency intubations and resuscitations so they are prepared for a real life scenario.  The computerized mannequins display vital signs, communicate, and respond to medicines.  A senior theatre nurse supervises the simulation and provides feedback to students on how the situation was managed.

Simulation is a critical value addition to the training program for two reasons. First, it allows KRNAs and have them practice on the mannequins where the risk to patient safety is nil. This allows them to practice their skills before moving on to live patients. Second, KRNAs are exposed to the various scenarios they will encounter once they leave Kijabe.  While Kijabe is fortunate to have diverse cases and is also well equipped in terms of drugs, equipment and supplies, this is not the case in all facilities where our KRNAs will work. Simulation exposes the students to such scenarios where resources are limited and cases they may not have seen in Kijabe operating theatres.

“Sub-Saharan Africa has one of the highest maternal mortality rates in the world, and, although exact figures aren’t available, it is expected that the region has the highest surgical and anesthesia-related mortality as well,” said Mark Newton, M.D., associate clinical professor of Anesthesiology and a pediatric anesthesiologist at the Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt and chief anesthesiologist at AIC Kijabe Hospital.

“This grant will greatly further our efforts to directly save lives and dramatically improve health care by training providers in underserved areas of the world. It is hard for me to express how thankful I am for this. We have the faculty and knowledge to translate an anesthesia education program we already operate in Kenya into a program that can be easily duplicated throughout the world, and with this grant, we can do just that.”

AIC Kijabe Hospital is grateful for the opportunity to train 44 KRNAs during 2015.

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Joash from HSO received training in simulation management at Vanderbilt.  He uses a scenario chart to manage the “patient” remotely, changing the vital signs and physical responses.


KRNA Administers administers CPR.


KRNA performs an intubation.