University of Vermont

Larners Donate New Cardiopulmonary “Manikins” to Clinical Simulation Lab

Eric Zelman, Nicholas Sinclair and Matthew Lin
Senior Simulation Specialist Eric Zelman (at left) observes medical students Nicholas Sinclair '16 (center) and Matthew Lin '16 as they work with a new "Harvey" simulator in the Clinical Simulation Laboratory. (Photo by Raj Chawla, UVM Medical Photography)

University of Vermont College of Medicine alumnus Robert Larner, M.D.’42, recently contributed $300,000 to the College for the purchase of five Harvey® cardiopulmonary simulators to be used by medical and nursing students, faculty members, residents and other learners in the UVM/Fletcher Allen Clinical Simulation Laboratory in UVM’s Rowell building.

Larner and his wife Helen, who live in California, have a long history of giving at the UVM College of Medicine. In 1985, they established the Larner Endowment Fund to provide significant support for financially needy and superior medical students at the College, with a goal of helping as many students as possible, and creating a culture of “giving back” that would continue to develop the Fund as its recipients and others moved on into their professional life. To date, the Fund has provided financial support to more than 1000 UVM medical students and receives over 150 alumni contributions annually. Most recently, the Larner Fund has changed to help students even more, by providing loan deferments through residency years, with extended repayment periods.

Manufactured by Laerdal Medical Corporation, Harvey® The Cardiopulmonary Patient Simulator is a full-sized manikin that can realistically simulate a range of 30 different cardiac diseases, from less complex conditions to rare, complicated scenarios. Harvey is portable, so can be moved from a location in the Clinical Simulation Lab’s virtual hospital setting to any environment in which a patient may be examined. Students, residents and cardiologists can feel pulses and use built-in stethoscopes – which are connected via infra-red technology to the manikin – to listen to six different breath sounds and nine different cardiac auscultation areas. At the touch of a button, blood pressure, pulses, heart sounds and murmurs can be changed. The Clinical Simulation Lab currently has 10 extra stethoscopes for each manikin.  The infra-red allows the entire class to hear what the instructor or student at the manikin are hearing.

“We are very grateful for Dr. Larner’s generous contribution, which supports the Clinical Simulation Laboratory in its mission to enhance the quality of patient care through innovations in education and clinical training,” says Ted James, M.D., associate professor of surgery and director of clinical simulation. “The use of advanced simulators such as Harvey helps our diffuse population of learners to master complex clinical skills leading to better patient care.”

In addition to the Harvey® simulators, Larner also facilitated the Clinical Simulation Lab’s acquisition of a “Choking Charlie,” an adult torso designed specifically for training students in the performance of the Heimlich Abdominal Thrust Maneuver. Larner lost a family member to choking and wanted to ensure students had an opportunity to learn how to accurately perform this lifesaving technique.

Read more information about Harvey®.

Visit the Clinical Simulation Laboratory website.