Students win first place in emergency medicine simulation competition

By Sarah Jane Grisham

Simwars Web
Left to right in photo above are first-place team members Reese Allen, Tavisty Tarkenton, Michael Baillio, Colin Bumann and Brooke Beck; and Kate Phillips, who competed last year and this year was a scenario writer. Also pictured is the infant manikin that was part of the emergency scenario.

A group of UNT Health Center medical students have won first place in a statewide medical emergency simulation contest.

The UNTHSC’s Student Initiative in Medical Simulation (SIMS) interest group competed in the “Sim Wars” contest held recently in Houston.

In Sim Wars, groups of five students each are given a scenario in which they must use a combination of their medical knowledge and skills in patient care and treatment to make an appropriate diagnosis and execute the proper steps.

Each team is given eight minutes in a simulated clinical setting and is judged by a panel of emergency room physicians.

The first-place team members were TCOM students Reese Allen, Tavisty Tarkenton, Michael Baillio, Colin Bumann and Brooke Beck.

UNTHSC Director of Simulation Nancy Tierney, who also serves as faculty adviser for the SIMS interest group, said the students’ performance at the competition “helps them to see and understand all of the practical information and knowledge they learned in the classroom.”

“It gives students the confidence they need and helps them cement things in their head,” Tierney said. “And when you boil it all down, it is really all about providing for the patient’s safety.”

The UNTHSC team’s victory was hard-earned, requiring a large amount of practice and preparation. The group placed second at last year’s competition.

“This competition was the pinnacle of our team’s hard work,” said Baillio, a second-year medical student. “We have been learning and competing together since early first year — our achievement validates the effort spent, and I am honored to work with such an outstanding group of future doctors.”

Another UNTHSC SIMS Team comprising Stormy Weiss, Bianca Arechiga, Justin Richardson, Cassie Robertson and Gabe Cecenas made it to the semifinals.

The competition is hosted annually at a conference of the Texas College of Emergency Physicians (TCEP).

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