eDocTalk article

Legacy Research Institute acquiring new simulation technology

February 2013
By P. Ashley Wackym, M.D.

Legacy Research Institute (LRI) has a threefold mission: basic and translational research, clinical research, and surgical education. We are excited about the role that new technologies are playing in all of these areas. Here is one example.

In the area of surgical education and team training, our Legacy Institute for Surgical Education and Innovation (LISEI) is very involved with simulation activities for training and assessment.

Measuring robotic surgery performance

One area that we are especially excited about is the role of high fidelity simulation devices in assessing surgeon performance. We are purchasing the Mimic dV-Trainer as a tool to measure surgeon performance with robotic surgery and to improve performance via specific training exercises.

This stand-alone system evolved from The Skills Simulator for the da Vinci Si, which is based on Mimic’s proprietary simulation technology. The dV-Trainer allows the potential for 24/7 surgeon access without taking a robot out of clinical use and provides a robust series of training and assessment tools.

Similar to the nationally developed Fundamentals of Laparoscopic Surgery (FLS) testing process that we currently provide at LRI/LISEI, in which surgeons learn, practice and empirically measure and document laparoscopic skills, there is a national push for using the dV-Trainer to measure robotic skills for credentialing purposes.

We believe that this technology will not only broaden the education opportunities in a variety of our LISEI courses, but will also provide a system-wide and regional resource for measuring and improving robotic surgical skills.

Tracking personal performance

The dV-Trainer uses benchmark data from more than 100 highly experienced robotic surgeons across the country. There is an "MScore" assessment that is based on expert mean and standard deviation data (similar to our FLS protocol) that can be used for the objective data necessary to facilitate credentialing and privileging.

Legacy surgeons and the surgical education leadership will be able to track performance and learning progress over time, personalize user accounts, create and share customized simulation curricula, manage courses, and export data for in-depth analysis. We anticipate that this new technology will be here and available for use in March 2013.

Legacy Research Institute is a valuable resource for Legacy Health and it remains our mission to contribute to the transformation of healthcare.

P. Ashley Wackym, M.D., clinical vice president of research

Legacy Research Institute

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