February 6, 2019By Lance Baily

TEDx Talk By SIMCharacters Founder Dr. Jens Schwindt Asks “How Safe is Medicine?”

Modern medicine is amazing but has become extremely complex. So complex, that healthcare professionals face situations they are not always able to deal with. So what does it take to be good at something in which failure is so easy, so effortless? Dr. Jens Schwindt is an experienced neonatologist and Founder of SIMCharacters, a Vienna-based company developing leading innovations in premature infant clinical simulation. He was deeply concerned by the limited pathologies and unrealistic anatomy offered by modern day preterm simulators. Determined to improve the outcomes of more than 15 million preterm births a year, in 2012 Jens founded SIMCharacters. This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community.

In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized, subject to certain rules and regulations.


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Jens starts his presentation by asking us how we would feel if the Captain of our airline flight introduced us and suggested there was a “95% chance we would land safely”? Jens wonders, why do we accept such odds in healthcare, but not in aviation? For those new to healthcare simulation, this TEDx talk is a wonderful way to introduce some high level concepts regarding medical error, patient safety, and medical simulation. Jens shared that in the aviation industry, a regulated required simulation assessment is required by pilots — but no such regulation is required by law for hospitals. Jens also introduced the TEDx audience to Paul, the premature high-fidelity simulator from the company he founded SIMCharacters. He asked the audience not to blame healthcare providers, but rather provide feedback to administrators to encourage them to engage in regular simulated trainings.

About Paul From Dr. Schwindt & SIMCharacters, the World’s Only High Emotion Preterm Infant Simulator

Measuring only 35cm long and weighing less than 1000g, Paul is the most accurate recreation of a preterm baby born in the 27th week of pregnancy. Overwhelmingly praised by neonatologists and NICU nurses for his highly realistic anatomy and convincingly lifelike features, the Paul High Emotion simulator has already become Europe’s favorite new manikin. Designed specifically to improve the realism and learning outcomes of your NICU/PICU training program, Paul will transform your simulations beyond high fidelity into high emotion.


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Did you know that 1 in 10 babies are born premature?

Providing high quality care for a preterm baby is a uniquely complex and time-sensitive process which is extremely challenging for inter-professional neonatal healthcare teams. Although preterm birth remains the most common cause of death among infants, preemies weighing only 500 to 1,000 grams can survive as healthy babies when cared for by highly trained healthcare professionals. Yet how can these professionals effectively learn life-saving procedures during such delicate critical care emergencies? Simulation is quickly becoming the modern way to educate and train healthcare professionals because it allows for the safe high-stakes practice of behavioral, cognitive and technical skills. Previously, such realistic technology had been impossible in the small body of a 27-week-old infant.

Moving beyond high fidelity to High Emotion

Current preterm simulators do not do enough to convey realistic patient experiences, leaving your participants to imagine a high fidelity relationship which minimizes their learning opportunity. Research has shown that more realistic simulators provide improved learning outcomes – and with 1 in every 10 births being preterm – shouldn’t your specialized department be the most prepared possible? Paul moves beyond high fidelity with new technologies never seen before in healthcare simulation… even in adult sized patient manikins.

Learn more about Jens and Paul on the SIMCharacters Website!


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