Birth Simulator

A birth simulator is an automated high-tech lifelike patient manikin that mimics a woman going through labor and delivery used in healthcare simulation. These complex manikins are also known as a labor simulators, childbirth simulators or birthing simulators. The complexity of these unique patient simulators range from a simple static model, where the operator physically moves the baby through the birth canal, to a highly technical model which is fully automated and which can deliver a baby with differing configurations. Some birthing simulators come with a baby manikin which contains realistic characteristics such as cardiac and respiratory functions. Other manikins are wireless with no attached cables. This means the mother can deliver her baby in the most unexpected places!

Recognizing the benefits of flight simulation training in aviation, healthcare education has seen a huge expansion in the use of simulation in all areas of medical education. Although simple childbirth simulators have been around for a number of years, the use of medical simulation in a simulation center, and in particular highly specialized birthing simulators, has increased significantly over the past 20 years. Manikins which more closely resemble and mimic human physiology are known as high fidelity manikins, which can even be used in surgery simulation. The more sophisticated the manikin and the more complex, the higher the cost.

At one end of the scale, a basic birthing simulator may simply consist of a pelvis, birth canal, cervix and baby with interchangeable parts that allow learners to visualize some basic steps in the childbirth process, like for nursing simulation. At the other end of the scale, ultra-sophisticated manikins may contain a combination of any of the following advanced features for clinical simulation:


Sponsored Content:


  • Wireless remote control
  • Streaming audio
    • Either prerecorded or transmitted from an educator in another room
  • Cardiac function
    • Heart rates and rhythms that are audible and show up on a monitor
    • Blood pressure (student can see BP on monitor or auscultate with cuff)
    • Respiratory rise and fall of the chest
  • Palpable pulses
  • Dilating cervix
  • Articulating joints
  • Pupil dilation
  • Accurate internal anatomy
  • Palpable uterine contractions with monitor waveforms
  • Oxygenation status of mother and baby.
  • Fetal monitor with monitor display
  • Newborn with heart rate, respiratory rate, umbilical cord, cyanosis
  • Forceps application
  • Vacuum extraction
  • Variable passage of baby in birth canal – position can show on monitor
  • Practice of episiotomies
  • Complete or partial delivery of placenta
  • Contracted or boggy uterus
  • Anatomical holograms
  • Practice of cesarean sections
  • Postpartum hemorrhage with copious amounts of fake blood
  • Simulate cardiac arrest of mother (or separate hi-fidelity manikin).

Advanced child birth simulators are available from global corporations like Gaumard Scientific (Noelle, Victoria), Laerdal Medical (SimMom, PROMPT, or MamaNatalie), and CAE Healthcare (Lucina, LucinAR) just to name a few. Low and Mid-fidelity simulators are available from companies like Limbs & Things, Pocket Nurse, and more. If you cannot wait until annual healthcare simulation conferences like INACSL, IMSH (from SSH), or SimGHOSTS, use our “find vendor” form to connect with leading vendors now! There are also varying levels of high-fidelity patient manikins in the categories of pediatric simulators and infant simulators too.

According to the US Census Bureau, in 2017 infant mortality rates ranged between 2.3 to 180 infant deaths per 1000 deliveries worldwide. In the United States the rate was 6.2 (ranking 56). Across the globe, even in developed countries, a surprising number of women die each year from conditions associated with childbirth. Although many deliveries and births occur without problems, there is clearly much work to be done to lower infant mortality, mother mortality and injury rates.

HealthySimulation.com is dedicated to providing the latest Birth Simulator news and Maternal Simulation resources from around the world. To follow along, sign up for our free healthcare simulation email newsletter, follow @HealthySim on Twitter and @HealthySim on Facebook, or join our HealthySim LinkedIn Group!

Simulation provides an opportunity for individual healthcare members and teams to practice care of a mother and her newborn without any risk of harm to a mother or baby. Many of the manikins are controlled remotely by a technician with input from an educator, who apply special effects makeup called moulage to make the simulated experience as real as possible. This allows learners to practice making independent decisions in a variety of real life situations. Childbirth simulators can mimic labor problems, high risk deliveries and postpartum emergencies. For example, simulators can mimic the woman who labors for hours or who has comorbidities such as diabetes or high blood pressure (eclampsia). Delivery can be programed to present with complications such shoulder dystocia (when the baby’s shoulder becomes stuck on the mother’s pubic bone), babies with low Apgar scores and placenta abnormalities. The timing of the birth and opening of the cervix can be altered to create various case studies. These models are often used for nursing simulation and medical schools as well as for advanced practice obstetrics.


Sponsored Content:


Life threatening postpartum conditions such as hemorrhage or cardiac arrest can also be simulated. Many potentially serious events associated with childbirth may not occur very often and therefore, staff get little chance to become efficient in responding to such emergencies. Simulation provides that opportunity and allows obstetricians, midwives, nurses and other healthcare personnel to practice critical events and save lives. These childbirth simulators also provide real life experiences for teams to practice communication and team interactions. Failure to communicate is one of the leading causes of medical errors.

Click Here to Connect to Leading Birthing Simulator Vendors

The choice of manikin is determined by the learning outcomes and learner level. Not every hospital or healthcare educational institution needs one of the high-end manikins nor can they afford the tens of thousands of dollars that the manikins cost. For example, associate degree nursing programs barely touch upon obstetrics and in these cases less expensive and simpler models can work very well to mimic childbirth and delivery. Birthing manikins provide the technology but the educational theory and methodology should be the foundation and primary focus of any simulation program.

Child Birth Simulator Latest News

healthcare simulation dictionary

*New* Healthcare Simulation Resource Pages: Debriefing, Birthing Simulators, Sim Centers & More

Simulation Champions looking to learn or share more about key topics in healthcare simulation will find great use of some of the new pages HealthySimulation.com has created over the past ...
Read More

The Role of Low-Fidelity Clinical Simulation in Labor and Delivery

In the context of reducing patient harm to maternal and newborn patients, this article from Laerdal discusses the role of low-fidelity simulation in labor and delivery. When planning simulation for Labor ...
Read More
womens health simulation stats

The Continuum of Care: Sharing Women’s Health Statistics Can Help Simulation Learners

There are an estimated 11,667,000 single parent households in the U.S. 81.4% of those are headed by single women.  And, that’s just a view of women on the home front ...
Read More

Operative Experience Demos RealMom Birthing Simulator at IMSH 2018 – Video Interview

Operative Experience provided HealthySim a special look at the RealMom birthing simulator in action at the IMSH 2018 event, showcasing realistic skin delivery with little hardware changes between births required ...
Read More

Laerdal's SimMom Receives Non-Gravid Abdominal Skin Product Update

Laerdal is now proud to be able to offer the SimMom Flat Abdominal skin as thier newest product enhancement for SimMom. With the new non-gravid flat abdominal skin, SimMom is not only ...
Read More

Teaching Patient Handoffs to Medical Students in OB/GYN: Simulation Curriculum and Assessment Tool

MedEdPortal, a division of AAMC, just released this healthcare simulation curriculum and assessment tool for those teaching patient handoffs to medical students in OB/GYN. You must be a subscriber to the ...
Read More

TEDx Talk: Simulation Necessary To Prepare for Birthing Emergencies

Is it ever okay for an inexperienced doctor to “practice” on you during a life-threatening emergency? Colonel Shad Deering is a high risk pregnancy doctor and Chair of the Department ...
Read More

Laerdal's New Premature Anne Task Trainer – IMSH 2016 Video Interview

Continuing HealthySim's coverage of the IMSH 2016 exhibitor floor, today we take a closer look at Laerdal's new Premature Anne task trainer for simulated training of a 25 week old. The ...
Read More

ModernMedicine.com Article Shares How "Simulation Builds Skills" in OB/GYN & Surgery

Today a recent article from two Doctors on ModernMedicine.com covering the fact that Simulation Builds Skills in Contemporary OB/Gyn & Surgery departments from Dr. Levine, clinical fellow, and Dr. Goldschlag, Assistant Professor of Clinical ...
Read More

iSimulate CTGi System Enables Real Time Obstetric Simulations | IMSH 2015 Video Interview

At IMSH 2015 we interviewed the team from iSimulate regarding their upgraded CTGi software which enables us to better train for OB/GYN scenarios. The "drag and drop" touch software of ...
Read More

Fidelis Maternal Fetal Simulator IMSH 2014 Interview Part 2: Advanced Engineering

Shortly after IMSH 2014 I posted a video about the belle of the ball: Fidelis from CAE Healthcare. You can watch part 1 of my Fidelis Maternal Fetal review interview ...
Read More

Laerdal SimMom Automation Hardware Upgrade Now Available

At IMSH 2014 Laerdal was on hand to demonstrate their new hardware upgrade for birthing simulator "SimMom", which now supports both automatic and manual delivery training scenarios with the optional Automatic ...
Read More

Sponsored Content: