- About RVU
- Current Students
Class of 2021
What are your medical interests? I think surgery is amazing, especially orthopedics. The fact that we can “cut to cure” blows my mind. I...
Instructor of Physiology
What do you do in your spare time? I play racquetball, make pizzas, and watch football. What advice do...
RVU’s Institute of Medical and Surgical Simulation is a clean, open space, dedicated to learning surgical skills. In this 1,000 square foot space, students practice gowning, gloving, sterile technique, knot-tying, suturing, intubation, ultrasound, and cricothyrotomy. Additionally, they participate in rounds and student presentations.
RVU owns five full-size cut suits (as well as several partial cut suits), the first medical school in the country to utilize this technology. The cut suit is a lifelike, wearable bodysuit that simulates trauma to the body. The suit contains blood-filled arteries, a pumping heart, lungs, and all other organs. Each suit has many interchangeable parts and organs, depending on the type of injury to be simulated. This allows students to practice surgery in the most realistic possible way, as the suit produces the accurate look, feel, and even smell of what students would experience in actual surgical scenarios. Through the use of the cut suit in our curriculum, our students graduate with more surgical experience and confidence.
Additionally, the cut suit is often used in simulated disaster scenarios. This course, called the Intensive Surgical Skills Course immerses the student doctors–as well as real-life physicians, military personnel, and emergency responders–into realistic scenarios, helping them use their medical skills and knowledge while under high stress. This course, along with the cut suit, won Military Training Technology’s 2015 Best Program Award.
RVU’s Institute of Medical and Surgical Simulation has the distinction of being recognized as a Focused Accredited Education Institute (AEI) by the American College of Surgeons. It is the only osteopathic medical school (and one of two medical universities in the Mountain West Region) to receive this accreditation.
As of August 2015, there is a new required surgical simulation course for third-year students. This was created after finding that students who participated in RVUCOM’s elective Intensive Surgical Skills Course performed better on their core surgery rotations, learned surgical skills better, and approached their surgery rotations with less apprehension. In the course, students learn scrubbing, gowning, gloving, sterile technique, suturing, knot-tying, recognition of instruments, surgical use of ultrasound, and invasive techniques such as endotracheal intubation, chest tube insertion, and cricothyroidotomy.