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Can you use Hollywood makeup to train paramedics?

Thursday, 13 October 2016

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Realistic injuries and Hollywood style makeup are being used to simulate life on the job for ECU paramedicine students.

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Can you use Hollywood makeup to train paramedics?

Realistic injuries and Hollywood style makeup are being used to simulate life on the job for ECU paramedicine students.


Paramedicine students work faster, but make more mistakes, when they’re working on patients with realistic wounds and fake blood.

That’s the key finding from Dr Brennen Mills’ research into how ECU is training the next crop of paramedics.

He used Hollywood-style makeup, known as moulage, to make training patients’ injuries look more realistic.

The research compared how well students completed first aid on patients with stab wounds when the makeup had been applied to when they had to use their imagination.

“The students would walk in to the simulation and see the wound and see blood everywhere and kick into action,” he said.

“While we know they make more mistakes, that’s an important part of training and simulation.

“We want them to make their mistakes in training rather than in the real world.

“We know also know that when they make mistakes in the moulage setting they feel like there’s real consequences.”

Paramedicine student Jessica Buck found the blood and wounds gave her a totally different experience than her normal classes.

“I think it’s fantastic, I try a lot harder when I can physically see what’s going on and I take the situation much more seriously,” she said.

“In this situation I saw it, I got in there and I did what I needed to do and I think that applies to the real world.”

Watch the full video on ECU’s YouTube channel.

For more information about how ECU is using simulation to train students and medical professionals, visit the Health Simulation Centre webpages.

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