On Sept. 25, 2013, the VCU School of Nursing hosted a component of LifeNet’s 2nd Annual VCUHS Organ Donation Mini-Collaborative in the Clinical Learning Center. The program brought in over 50 nurses from the VCU Medical Center’s intensive care units for training on the organ donation process.

The program opened with a heart-wrenching story about a mother’s experience with donating her daughter’s organs, followed by cardiac and brain death simulations. The program closed with a speech from a courageous young man about his journey after having two transplant surgeries.

“It was rewarding to help develop the simulation experiences, with the goal of bringing the donation process alive for the nurse,” said Carla Nye D.N.P., CPNP-PC, CNE, director of the Clinical Learning Center.

The School of Nursing provided the space for the simulation in the Clinical Learning Center and LifeNet Health Hospital’s Development Coordinator, Stephanie Zocco Cowardin, coordinated the training to increase the nurses’ knowledge about the process of organ donation.

“We want the Clinical Learning Center to be a part of improving health care in the area,” said Nye about the significance of partnerships.

The actors gave the audience a real look into what a patient would have to go through when faced with such a decision. Among the actors were doctors, nurses, a respiratory therapist, family care coordinators and a Chaplain-all who work with the organ donation system. The actors also included VCU Nursing students Ashley Hinkle and Courtney Justice.

For more information, visit the LifeNet  website.

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