August 7th, 2008 by Dianne Peña

I killed a person today.

I thought what I know was enough to revive Hal but I was wrong. I let him die— well, our group let him die.

Our group was assigned to the FEU-VINES (Virtual Integrated Nursing Education Simulation) Laboratory for our duty on Acute Biologic Crisis concept and with this concept, we will going to simulate a cardio-pulmonary resuscitation to the mannequin named HAL. The scenario was, the client was coding (with our clinical instructor controlling his status) and we should revive him the best way we could according to what was taught to us.

During the simulation, we have given too much epinephrine to Hal without the interval of 3-5 minutes that made him more critical and so, still with constant compressing and hyperventilating, at times defibrillating, our clinical instructor just said, ok Post Mortem (meaning, we didn’t revived him.) Then, stopped and pronounced the time of death.

My critical mind tells me, “We we’re used to our AHSE (Associate in Health and Science Education) days to just assume things and not “really” do the procedure that is why we forgot to say “After 3 minutes blah blah blah…” which killed Hal. I learned that “To assume is a mortal sin.” Also, our adrenaline rush and increase of our excitatory neurotransmitters leads us to forgetting things. — That was I, using Rationalization.

Though Hal is just a mannequin, he was still my patient and I was frustrated because our efforts was not enough to revive him as much as we do want him to survive. (In VINES laboratory, mannequins are treated as “real” persons).

I was on mixed emotions because I felt like a real nurse (we are even called “junior nurses”) in that scenario but I was saddened by the fact that we didn’t revived him. I enjoyed the simulation because I learned a lot of things but I was dismayed for the little mistakes we’ve made. Nevertheless, this will make me to bear all the things I’ve learned today in my heart and not repeat the same mistake over again.

Don’t worry. I am Ok now. =)

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