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Amazingly Realistic Doll Allows Neonatal Staff to Simulate Infant Emergencies

San Diego – June 21, 2012 – The Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Rady Children’s Hospital-San Diego is among the first children’s hospitals in the nation to purchase a “SimBaby”, an amazingly realistic doll that breathes, cries, gurgles, and can even turn blue. The technologically-advanced doll can simulate a variety of medical emergencies, including breathing difficulties and heart problems.

“We care for the very sickest babies in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Rady Children’s, so it is vital for our staff to be ready for any emergency situation,” said Dr. Gail Knight, Division Director of Neonatology at Rady Children’s. “The SimBaby is an amazing training tool that will allow our staff to confidently respond to any emergency as a team.”

The Fuerte Hills unit of Rady Children’s Auxiliary donated $40,000 to the Campaign for Rady Children’s to purchase the SimBaby. The goal of the Campaign is to raise $220 million by December 2012, to fund Care, Technology and Research. This donation helps fulfill the Campaign’s goal to purchase advanced technology.

The SimBaby allows medical staff to monitor heart and lungs sounds, check for pulse and blood pressure, and perform procedures like placing IVs, inserting chest tubes, and giving CPR. The SimBaby is hooked up to monitors and a small camera that records every action taken during a simulated emergency.

“Most simulations up until now have been very basic, with simple dolls and an instructor giving cues to nurses like ‘Your doll is not breathing,’” said Dr. Charles Sauer, a Neonatologist and Director of Simulation at Rady Children’s. “We’ve found that if you have realistic simulations and train as a team, everyone is going to work more effectively when a real emergency happens.”

After a simulation is completed, medical staff can go back and review the data collected and watch a video recording, allowing them to evaluate every action taken and decide what might be done differently the next time.

Not only will nurses, physicians and respiratory therapists at Rady Children’s be trained in medical emergencies with the SimBaby, trainers will take the simulator to other hospitals and medical facilities in the community and train staff there to become better equipped to handle medical emergencies involving infants.

About Rady Children’s Hospital-San Diego:
Rady Children’s Hospital-San Diego is a 442-bed pediatric care facility providing the largest source of comprehensive pediatric medical services in San Diego, Southern Riverside and Imperial counties. Rady Children’s is the only hospital in the San Diego area dedicated exclusively to pediatric healthcare and is the region’s only designated pediatric trauma center. On October 10, 2010, Rady Children’s opened the Acute Care Pavilion, a LEED-Certified (green) building that is home to the incredible Peckham Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders, the state-of-the-art Warren Family Surgical Center, and a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit that cares for our community’s most fragile newborns. In June 2012, U.S. News & World Report ranked Rady Children’s among the best children’s hospitals in the nation in all ten pediatric specialties the magazine surveyed, including #2 in Orthopedics.