The Chamberlain Group
The Chamberlain Group is a medical simulation company that designs, develops and manufactures anatomically accurate healthcare simulation models, aka medical simulators. These simulated training products can capture the consistency and response of living tissue, providing an alternative to the use of animals and cadavers during interventional training.
The company has a studio headquartered in Great Barrington, Massachusetts, where the organs are built. Working in close collaboration with other medical device companies and teaching hospitals in 50 countries, the Chamberlain Group is able to meet procedural training objectives with clean, smart clinical simulation solutions. The products produced help illuminate, educate and differentiate learners across the world.
Today, the Chamberlain Group’s custom virtual anatomy and simulated anatomy tools are recognized globally for their superior visual and experiential realism. The Chamberlain Group’s clients now encompass industry leaders in medical devices, pharmaceuticals and product development, as well as leaders in medical centers, teaching institutions and research facilities.
The Chamberlain Group’s Transition from Film to Medical Simulation
Founded in 1999, The Chamberlain Group is the culmination of over two decades of enduring partnership and collaboration between principals, Lisa and Eric Chamberlain. Upon joining the Academy-Award-winning New York City-based design and effects studio, R/GA, Lisa met and collaborated with Eric. Together they were instrumental in building R/GA’s reputation for work in feature films, graphic design, computer graphics and digital video.
Previously having worked in the visual effects industry, their combined credits include effects, opening titles and feature campaigns for movies like Superman, The World According to Garp, Zelig, Predator I and II, The Big Chill, Tootsie, Gandhi, Body Double, Ghostbusters, Judge Dredd, Eraser and The Matrix. Continuing their work after founding The Chamberlain Group has led to the hiring of a collective group of sculptors, designers, fabricators, engineers and model makers.
As president of the company, Eric leads The Chamberlain Group’s design and new product development team. He brings a composite of his passions and his work in the fields of architecture, visual effects and modeling for feature films and television, mechanical effects and electronics to the creation of surgical trainers. Eric holds U.S. and international patents on the company’s Beating Heart Trainers.
As managing partner, Lisa oversees the company’s new business development. She developed specialized production and management skills that blend together artistry and technology. Holding production to the same high standards that were in place for the company’s visual effects work, the Chamberlain Group’s mission is to keep product development excellent, innovative and nimble.
According to the Chamberlain Group, the company’s transition from high-end visual effects and production across the film and television industries to medical device production has led to increased client-focused innovation opportunities. When the company merged into medical device manufacturing in the late 90s, the healthcare simulation market had not yet fully emerged. Without an institutional or disciplinary bias, and without a set formula to follow, the Chamberlain Group says the company continued to “entertain all [simulation] possibilities.”
The Chamberlain Group currently showcases developed simulation products across educational environments, simulation conferences, exhibitions and shows, such as those hosted by SimGHOSTS, INACSL, ASPiH, SESAM, and the International Meeting for Simulation in Healthcare (IMSH) from the Society for Simulation in Healthcare (SSiH).
Chamberlain Group Medical Simulation Products
To achieve desired outcomes, The Chamberlain Group’s products are created with discussion, research, design, development and production in mind. The products can be filtered by specialty, anatomy or skills. Specialty product areas include cardiology, cardiothoracic, gastroenterology, general surgery, gynecology, orthopedics, otolaryngology (ENT), pediatric, urology and vascular. Anatomical product categories include the abdomen, GI (lower), GI (Upper), heart, hand, hip, radial artery, skin, thorax, vasculature, bowel, pelvis, saphenous vein, sinus, trachea and valve. Categorical products by skills are anastomosis, CABG, cannulation, demonstration, endoscopy, intervention, MIS, robotics, skills training, surgery, suturing/dissection, team training, VATS and vein therapies.
Products designed to help simulate training for anastomosis include 3 mm and 4 mm graft and target vessels, an aorta stand, belly case, dissection pod, double layer bowel, bony thorax and CABG beating heart. The heart comes in different sizes and versions, including one with ancillary, a non-patient version, a cannulatable larger beating heat and the possible addition of CABG sites.
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CABG Beating Heart has a highly detailed exterior with the feel and movement of a live human heart. The heart is animated by the combined actions of the Beating Heart Controller and a regulated source of compressed air. Suturable native coronary arteries at selected sites allow for anastomosis training., and the beating heart mechanism functions like real muscle (programmable at different speeds and rhythms). Other CABG-specific products include an enhanced ECMO/perfusion team trainer, heart case and high-fidelity simulation CT surgical trainer.
For cannulation training, The Chamberlain Group produces 4 inch aortas, ECMO aortas, ECMO right atriums, a femoral access module, high fidelity simulation aortas, jugular access inserts, replacement cannulatable aortas, a Sam Pediatric Cardiothoracic simulator module and Surgical Sam aortas. The Surgical Sam simulation manikin represents a 14-month-old infant of average length and head circumference. The pediatric simulator is built on a “chassis” with interchangeable thoracic and abdominal anatomy modules available; the Sam Pediatric Cardiothoracic Module or the Sam Pediatric General Surgery Module.
Another integral training product produced by the Chamberlain Group for demonstration purposes is the beating heart in thorax, which provides a thorough off-pump training experience. Coupling the patented beating heart technology with a thorax completes an anatomical environment for off-pump training.
Endoscopy simulator training needs can be met with The Chamberlain Group’s abdominal surgery trainer, biliary endoscopy stricture set, biliary endoscopy trainer, clear saphenous vein trainer inset, colon endoscopy trainer, colon polyps, colonoscopy trainer, compact abdominal surgery trainer, compact AST colon with mesocolon, compact AST head and esophagus and more. The compact AST can be used as an emergency simulator to practice obtaining oral endoscopic access and device deployment.
In terms of skills training, many of these products, in combination with dexterity skill sets, a comprehensive urinary sling trainer, innovative wound closures, a radical laparoscopic simulator prostatectomy trainer, manipulation skills sets and a pelvic mesh fixation trainer, can help to prepare a learner with situational awareness for real-world clinical scenarios.
The Chamberlain Group’s Robotic Trainer is another tool that offers a complete system for introducing practitioners to the basic skills required for robotic or other minimally invasive surgeries. The base with a turntable places the individual training pods in correct orientation to the scope and instruments every time. The trainer’s collapsible, angled top is supplied with a vinyl window for port placement. Individual pods can each help to train on a different skill proficiency drill.
Team training is also made possible through The Chamberlain Group products, such as the Surgical Sam for CT training, Surgical Sam for general surgery, Sam pediatric simulation cardiothoracic module, Sam pediatric general surgery module and trauma thoracotomy trainer. The Trauma Thoracotomy Trainer simulates a patient with an indication for a resuscitative thoracotomy. The trainer features a realistic beating heart with a bleeding right ventricular wound, adjustable heart rate and suturable wound site for multiple use.
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