Virtual Training for New Healthcare Facilities

Training staff for the opening of a new facility can be extremely difficult, especially during a pandemic. The traditional method of onsite workflow planning is immensely limited at this time. CPL and its Creative Labs Team were recently commissioned by the Rochester Regional Health System to develop a fully interactive, virtual training model for front line workers to become familiar with their new spaces in the Sands-Constellation Center for Critical Care tower in Rochester, NY. Because of COVID-19 restrictions as well as expedited construction activity, access to the building has been restricted, however, familiarization to the space remains crucial prior to its opening in September.

Why is acclimation to the space so important?

From knowing where critical supplies and equipment are located, to staff wayfinding, to optimizing patient throughput, this tool is incredibly significant, especially in a new facility where the individual units themselves are approximately three times larger than their existing space at Rochester General Hospital.

Ironically, the 7-story, 312,000-square-foot tower was designed and planned well before the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the design is the exact kind of modern healthcare facility that health systems across the globe will now be looking to build. With characteristics like acuity adaptable patient rooms, this state-of-the-art facility will aid in providing care for a variety of patient types. And with ample flex and surge spaces, the facility is also prepared for a future pandemic surge.

In total, 48 program locations were programmed into the virtual model including locations in the NICU, Operating Room Suite, Post Anesthesia Care Unit, Postpartum Care Unit, and a standard patient floor.

The simulation video above allows you to tour one of the patient bays (use the mouse to look around).

Terry Meagher, a Senior Project Manager with Rochester Regional Health, has seen first-hand the benefits of the simulation training.

“With limited time and availability to get into the space, the CPL virtual tours are a significant part of the overall training program. These virtual models, which we have embedded into a variety of computer-based learning modules, will be assigned out to all team members and physicians at Rochester General Hospital. This will allow individuals to have a base understanding on how to navigate the building as well as understand key workflows and critical pathways that are changing,” Meagher said.

Training modules will begin to be assigned in mid-August 2020, allowing team members about six weeks to complete.

This is a screen capture from the virtual training model of a Nurses’ Station at the new Rochester Regional Health Sands-Constellation Center for Critical Care. The floor plan in the top left-hand corner of the image allows the user to tour different locations in the actual training model.

“It’s extremely fulfilling to be able to offer this service to healthcare workers who have been under immense pressure the past number of months,” said CPL Principal Architect, Michelle Trott, AIA, NCARB, ACHA. “We are all about making their jobs easier while increasing patient outcomes,” she added.

CPL partnered with TEKsystems, an industry leader in full-stack technology services, on the final deliverable for Rochester Regional Health.