University of Vermont

College of Medicine

Office of Medical Communications

Clinical Simulation Lab Hosts Texting and Driving Prevention Program

Texting and driving image

On Monday, November 11, 2013, the Clinical Simulation Laboratory at the University of Vermont and Fletcher Allen Health Care is presented a unique program designed to discourage high school students from texting while driving.

Approximately 65 driver education students from Vermont’s Milton High School and Northfield High School participated in the program, which took place in the UVM College of Medicine’s Sullivan Classroom in the Medical Education Center.

Clinical Simulation Laboratory Medical Director Ted James, M.D., provided welcome remarks at the opening of the event. Other presenters includedSimulation Laboratory Director of Operations Cate Nicholas, Ed.D., M.S., P.A.; Mario Trabulsy, M.D., associate professor of surgery and Fletcher Allen emergency medicine physician; and Fletcher Allen Trauma Services staff Christine Keating and Jennifer Gratton.

The 90-minute session featured a demonstration of an advanced driving simulator, presentation of a realistic trauma scenario, and a testimonial from the victim of an accident caused by a teen driver who was texting. Additional program elements included interactive surveys at the beginning and end of the program to measure current behavior and whether or not the program will influence future behavior, and the demonstration of several free smartphone apps that are designed to prevent texting while driving.

This event was supported by the Clinical Simulation Laboratory at the University of Vermont and Fletcher Allen Health Care; Fletcher Allen’s Division of Trauma, Burn and Critical Surgery and Community Health Improvement program; Vermont Youth Safety Council; and the Vermont Department of Health.