Elms College hosts mass casualty incident training for nursing students
CHICOPEE, MA (WGGB/WSHM) -- Mass casualty training was held Monday at Elms College, which gave senior nursing students the chance to respond to a crisis situation.
“It was overstimulating walking in because it’s almost hard to think about, what am I supposed to do now, but I think it helped because I made it more realistic,” said Elms College nursing student Lainey Mwangi.
Mwangi described a simulated emergency of a tornado ripping through an elementary school, which created teachable moments for her and other students. Inside, students found many mannequins with injuries from severe cuts to lost limbs.
“They’re able to make connections with what they’re learning in class versus what they’re going to see we try to bridge the gap,” said Elms College lab assistant Megan Pont.
Simulation organizers told Western Mass News that these trainings are essential, considering the number of mass casualty events in recent months including the Robb Elementary School shooting in Uvalde, TX that killed 21 people last May and the shootings on the campus of Michigan State University last month that left three people dead and five others injured.
“Many nurses will spend their entire career not having to deal with a mass casualty, but with the increasing level of violence that were seeing in elementary schools in the middle schools and all the schools…Our world has become polarized. It’s so violent that our nursing students need to know that this exists and the risk is real,” said Elms College lab coordinator Terry Kinsley.
Another important lesson students took away from Monday’s simulation was the importance of being aware of your surroundings and making sure you protect yourself. It’s something Mwagni learned after facing a simulated electrocution after stepping in a puddle during the training.
“You can’t like help if you’re not, if you’re not, like if you’re a patient, so that made other people have to take on the role of my position, which kind of put more work on them,” Mwagni said.
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